Did you really expect the shooting for Aayirathil Oruvan to take so long?
No, Selva never told me! (laughs).
Jokes apart, I knew he attempted something nobody else did and I understand that it takes time. He had originally told me we would have to shoot my portions for about 75 days. We actually wound up only after shooting for more than 240 days. But this is a film I am proud of.
Why did this film get so delay?
It’s an extremely different project to undertake. It was not something tried and tested. And I am completely okay with the effort that needs to be put in for a film like this.
And speaking of Selva’s working style, he is someone who takes a lot of long shots, so they are that much more difficult to shoot. Especially if the scenes involve many actors. And Aayirathil Oruvan has so many junior artistes in the second part that made coordination very hard.
Selvaraghavan is known to be a taskmaster. Any difficulty working with him?
Definitely not! But we did have a few hiccups while shooting. I remember a day when everything went wrong. The cameras, the crew, the light or our dance movements, something went wrong everytime we tried it. So, we postponed the shoot of that particular portion and got back to it six days later. It still was a problem and we thought it was jinxed. It did happen a day later but I remember it as the hardest part of doing this film.
What is your role in the film?
I’m definitely not an archeologist as people suspect. It’s not an average role. I appear in the entire film and you have to watch it to know who I am.
You must have missed a lot of films, shooting for Aayirathil Oruvan.
Yes, and I’ve stopped keeping count. It would be a better idea to actually ask Selvaraghavan because beyond a point, when producers approached me, I just asked them to speak to Selva. He would get so irritated with me for making producers speak to him.
You’ve made your presence in Hindi but why do you still keep doing Tamil and Telugu films. Isn’t Bollywood any actress’ ultimate career dream?
I have done critically acclaimed films there, but let’s face it, my big films there didn’t work as well as Maalammal Weekly did. It’s only in Tamil and Telugu that I got different scripts like Varsham and Chellame. I am attached to South India. I really enjoy doing films here.
Now that the film is over, what are your plans next?
A good holiday. I promised myself a holiday when this film got over but I decided to postpone it till the film’s audio launch. I am in Chennai for the audio launch, and following it, I have decided to unwind.