Devaraj is almost 250 films old. However his soon-to-be-released film Arjuna by PC Shekar will be special for him. Arjuna sees him sharing the screen with his son Prajwal for the first time. The characters becomes more interesting as they share many tense moments. Giving the whole credit to Shekar for the film, Devaraj says, “The director’s imagination, visualisation and commitment will be highlighted through this film.”
Initially, Devaraj was hesitant to work with his son in Arjuna for he didn’t want to play the cop’s character, which he thought has been done to death by him. “Shekar managed to convince me and said that he would be presenting me differently from my other films and he did stick to his word. I was really happy to have enacted a nice role along with my son in Arjuna. The film recalled my memories of work that I did 15 years ago when directors had such nuanced roles for me. Shekar has presented my character with lot of dynamism,” says Devaraj.
As a father though, some situations were a little difficult for Devaraj.
“There was one scene where I had to manhandle Prajwal. I am driving a car and he is walking on the pavement and I had to drag him and hit him against a wall. I was a little nervous at that moment. Though as an actor, there is professionalism in me but the paternal concern was somewherethere. I was hoping that nothing should go wrong while doing that particular scene. Of course, if there was anybody else too in the place of Prajwal, I would have felt the same way because the situation was disturbing and it really disturbed me. I said ‘Sorry’ to Prajwal, just after the shot. Even Shekar apologised for that scene because he knew how much I love my children and family. He realised that I was disturbed with that shot. But he thanked me for doing it,” he explains.
Incidentally there was a scene where Prajwal had to raise his voice against him and in order tomake it easy for the son, the senior actor insisted on just one take. “I had a feeling that Prajwal might get conscious while doing that scene. So we decided not to do too many rehearsals for that particular scene as I didn’t want to give him the time to ponder. We learnt the lines and went straight for the shot and it was done in one take. After the scene, I saw Prajwal shivering. Ultimately we were happy that the father and son were sincere to the characters and stayed committed to the role,” says Devaraj.