On Tuesday afternoon, we’ve caught actor Vijay Raghavendra at rush hour. Amidst preparing for his upcoming Chennai visit to upload his film, Vijay tells us that “Kismat is all about time.” Incidentally, it’s taken three years for Vijay to bring this film out to theatres. The work which started in 2015 was completed only recently. “Right from the beginning, I never believed in planning and just went with the flow. Even though I completed shooting, my music director Rajesh Murugesan fell ill and we took time to complete it,” he says.
Vijay, who rose to fame as a child artiste, and won national and state awards, decided to don the director’s hat in 2015 for Kismat. “Actually, this wasn’t a long-pending idea. This was a craving for a couple of years. When I came out of Bigg Boss house in 2013, I was under the illusion that I was a star, and nobody could stop me. I did wait to do some good work and was on the lookout for good characters. With Bigg Boss, I became closer to the people and had a better connection with them. Despite this, I didn’t get the kind of opportunity I was expecting,” he says.
Which is when he decided to do something on his own. “That’s how Kismat happened. I picked up a subject and decided to produce the film. And instead of bringing any other director on board, I decided to take on that responsibility even though I didn’t have any experience in that field. I’d only attended story discussions previously, which helped in helming the project,” says Vijay, who in addition to directing and acting in the film, has also sung a song and penned lyrics for two tracks. “Not that I wanted to do it all, it just happened that way,” he says.
No comparisons, please
Kismat has been inspired by a Malayalam flick Neram starring Nivin Pauly, but Vijay doesn’t want to be bogged down by comparisons. “This is my first attempt, I don’t want to be compared to anyone. Personally, I am satisfied with the job we have done as a team,” says Vijay, who gives a shout-out to director, Alphonse Puthren, the writer and director of the original film in Malayalam.
Life is all about time
The character in Kismat (made under the banner Spandana Srishhti) is something close to him, Vijay admits. “Life is all about time. We can’t go back even a moment. It’s a film relevant to all age groups,” he says. Since the actor understands the nuances of acting, did that make it easier for him to direct the artistes? “As an actor, I had to check with the director, plan out shooting, come up with promotion strategies, and think from the audience's point of view. However, as a director, you have to visualise the film as a team, which in itself is an experience,” he says.After three decades in the film industry, Vijay says that the industry has grown to such an extent that anyone can be treated in any manner. “At this point in my career, I just want to work sincerely and according to the demands of the industry,” he signs off.
Sangeetha Bhat not promoting Kismat cites health reasons
Kismat’s female lead Sangeetha Bhat has apparently said that she will not be able to promote the film “I had told her about the film’s release a month ago. But she cited health issues and said she wouldn’t be able to participate. I didn’t want to force her,” he says.