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Ready to entertain this Deepavali

Last updated on: November 2, 2010 13:44 IST

Ready to entertain this Deepavali

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Shobha Warrier in Chennai

The buzz about the Mitran R Jawahar-directed Tamil movie Uthamaputhiran (remake of the Telugu hit Ready) is quite high as the director is teaming up with Dhanush for the third time in a row.

As their last two films Yaaradi Nee Mohini and Kutty were successful, expectations are high this time around. While Dhanush had Nayantara and Shriya Saran as heroines in the last two films of Jawahar, this time it is Genelia D'Souza (Genelia was the heroine of the Telugu original Ready too).

A confident Jawahar tells Shobha Warrier what to look out for. Excerpts:

Your film is going to release this Deepavali. Since your two earlier films were hits, are you in a more relaxed frame of mind now?

It is exciting to have a Deepavali release because that is the time people go out and enjoy. Many asked me whether I was nervous. In fact, I am quite relaxed and in a happy frame of mind. Like Deepavali is celebrated by the entire family, this is one film that can be viewed by all the members of the family. I am sure it will entertain each and everyone. I am happy that I can release my film during the biggest festival and entertain the family with a comedy.


Image: Dhanush, Mitran R Jawahar and Genelia D Souza

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'Just because a film is a hit in Telugu, we don't remake it'

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It's a remake of the Telugu hit Ready...

It's a remake but I have made it differently, for the Tamil audience.

When you make a remake, do you get the same kind of creative satisfaction that you derive from an original script?

Definitely not. At the same time, let me add that it's a big challenge making a remake too. Yes, it is true that nothing can be compared to making an original film where you have all the freedom in the world to create a scene. But while directing a remake, you have to have the original as the benchmark. You cannot deviate too much from the original film. It is risky and challenging to make something that does not deviate much from the original but still looks fresh. I will not say that I like making remakes. The creative satisfaction you derive out of an original film is much, much more.

What are the criteria you look for while selecting a film to remake?

Just because a film is a hit in Telugu, we don't remake it. Only when you know that the story will suit the Tamil audience do you choose to remake it. The main thing you look for is the story while selecting a film to remake.

 


Image: A scene from Ready

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'A remake has to be a bigger hit than the original'

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Did you make any changes in the story and scenes to suit the Tamil audience?

Of course, I did make a lot of changes to make the film suitable for the Tamil audience. I have done the same in my earlier two films too. In the first half of Uthamaputhiran, the milieu, presentation and even the backdrop were changed but the second half is full of drama which you will not be able to change much.

The original Ready was a huge hit. Does that put a lot of pressure on you when you remake it?

Yes, it does. We choose a film to remake because it's a hit. If the remake is not a hit, it means you haven't done it well while remaking it. A remake has to be a bigger hit than the original because you are getting a chance to better it while remaking it.

The original of your first film Yaaradi Nee Mohini when directed by Selvaraghavan in Telugu was a huge hit. Were you tense at that time?

Yes, I was under tremendous tension while working on Yaaradi Nee Mohini. I worked 200% harder while making it. I had to live up to what a director like Selvaraghavan made. Everybody told me it was better than the original. What more do you want to hear than that?

So far, all those who have seen this film also, have told me that it has come out better than the original.


Image: A scene from Ready

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'I have ten original scripts ready'

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Don't you want to make an original film now?

Of course, every director wants to make only original films and not remakes. When I was working as an assistant director, I never dreamt of making a remake. No assistant director will have such a dream. I have worked as an assistant for ten years. When I got the offer to make Yaaradi  Nee Mohini, I grabbed it. At least, I was getting a chance to direct a film.

But I have ten original scripts ready!

I read that the reason why you came to films was director Mahendran who made some memorable films in Tamil...

Two people inspired me to enter films; one is Mahendran sir and the other is music maestro Ilayaraja.

The kind of films Mahendran made were quite different from what you have made. His films were realistic and true to life. Do you like the kinds of films he made?

I like the realistic films he made but one cannot make those kinds of films always. I will try to make at least one film that is similar to Mahendran sir's. My desire is to have variety in my repertoire.

In the 70s and 80s, there were more realistic films and film-makers like Balu Mahendra, Mahendran, Bharatiraja, etc in Tamil. Do you feel the taste of the Tamil audience has changed considerably now?

Even today, there are realistic films being made. Take for example, Angadi Theru, Paruthiveeran, Kathal, Subramaniapuram, etc. These are all realistic films.

Yes, there are such films. But we saw only one Angadi Theru last year. Do you think audience look at a film only as an entertainer these days?

Yes, I agree. There are very few (realistic) films today and there were many then. Today's audience want fast paced entertainers. Another thing is that films today are made with only the audience in mind. We film-makers have to make what they want. We cannot make the kinds of films that we like and ask them to accept them. They don't wait for us, they just leave you and go somewhere else for entertainment. There are so many things that entertain them today.

So, today the taste of the audience is the benchmark though they did accept both Angadi Theru and Gilli.


Image: A scene from Ready

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'It is not that I will work only with Dhanush'

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All your three films starred Dhanush as the main lead. Is this because you share a good rapport with him or because you are impressed with him as an actor?

I would say yes to both the reasons. Yes, there is a good understanding between us. Another thing is, when a combination works, producers come forward to produce more films with them. So, it's a combination of all these factors that made us work together the third time. There is nothing sentimental about it [laughs]. It is not that I will work only with Dhanush. My next film will be with another hero.

Now that you have worked with Dhanush in three films, is there more understanding between you two? Can you foresee how he will enact a particular scene?

I can. I know him from the time I worked as an assistant director. So it is easy directing him as I have to only tell him what I want. He will come up with exactly what I have in mind.


Image: A scene from Ready

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'The Dhanush-Genelia pair is quite fresh'

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You have had three beautiful heroines -- Nayantara, Shriya and Genelia -- in your films. How important is it to have beautiful heroines for the success of the film?

If you have a good pair in the lead, there is business value to it. Also, people love to see two beautiful actors in films. The Dhanush-Genelia pair is quite fresh and she has an equally important role in the film which is a plus point.

Where will you be on the day of its release?

Though I am excited and relaxed now, I will not be able to sleep on the night before the release. I will keep my mobile switched off till the afternoon. I will get out of the house only by evening. I will be too tense to watch the very first show.

When will you forget these characters and start creating new ones?

I have already started thinking about new characters and a new story but it will take at least two months for me to completely forget Uthamaputhiran.


Image: A scene from Ready

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