Nithilan is thrilled about his directorial debut, Kurangu Bommai, and having been able to rope in talented actors like Vidharth and Bharathirajaa.
“What happens when many lives--that of two elderly friends, a father-son duo, some opportunists, and a person who’ll do anything for a family--intersect? That’s the gist of Kurangu Bommai,” says the filmmaker, who claims the monkey in his title symbolises a person’s heart that constantly yearns.
Calling the film a suspense thriller, Nithilan assures, “The film will be gripping right from the word go. While watching it, not a single member of the audience will be fiddling with their phones.”
The director is ecstatic about the cast including Bharathirajaa and Vidharth. He considers the former to be his mentor. “I remember that he saw my short films a long time back and told me good things even then. I was initially apprehensive about approaching him for the role, but he put me at ease. During the shooting, he spoke a lot about his previous films, and it was like working with a father. He helped me with making this film without ever being overbearing.”
Nithilan hopes to work with Bharathirajaa again, and says that Kurangu Bommai demanded a person of Bharathirajaa’s stature. “His character is important and it demanded a special actor. That said, the person he plays is in complete contrast to who is in reality. In person, Bharathirajaa is a dominant personality, but in the film, he plays an innocent father. It is also quite different from the one he played in Pandiya Naadu.”
Nithilan chose Vidharth because he needed an actor “who could portray the character realistically.
I was also keen on having a very simple cast. He picks his scripts with care, knows what his strengths are, and chooses only stories that suit his persona.” The director says there are other characters in the film that have more scope than Vidharth’s character. “But he accepted this role because he loved the script. His scenes with Bharathirajaa sir have come out really well. It will not be a typical father-son relationship”
Delna Davis plays the female lead in this film, which also stars veteran producer PL Thenappan and Elango Kumaravel of Abhiyum Naanum fame. Explaining that PL Thenappan’s role will have grey shades, Nithilan compares the character with “a jackfruit that’s hard on the outside but sweet and soft inside.”
The director says Elango Kumaravel is an excellent method actor. “While he’s known mainly for Abhiyum Naanum, Kurangu Bommai will prove to be a turning point in his career.” The film also features a number of supporting artistes who will be playing interesting characters.
Nithilan is all praise for the production house, Shreyasree Movies, which he says is quite open to introducing new directors if the script is good. “Though I’m quite new to the film industry, they gave me complete freedom to work on this film, and were also very supportive.”
Kurangu Bommai also marks the Tamil debut of Ajaneesh Loknath, who is known for his work in the Kannada film industry. NS Uthaya Kumar of Metro fame is the cinematographer, while Abhinav Sunder Nayak who edited Uriyadi, Vaayai Moodi Pesavum and Godha is also on board. With the audio launched last Sunday, Kurangu Bommai is set for release in July.