Accidental entry

He has produced 10 films and has acted in as many, though not in any of his own ventures. Jayaprakash was brought in front of the camera by friend and director Cheran in Maya Kannadi. Jayaprakash's sons — Niranjan (22) and Dushyanth aka Dushy (16) — made their acting debut with Easan. “It was quite accidental, similar to my own entry into acting. The boys were spotted while accompanying me to one of my film functions, and producer-director M. Sasikumar decided to rope both of them in for Easan,” says Jayaprakash. While Dushy is back to completing his education, Niranjan is doing a role in Muppozhudhum Un Karpanai, with Atharva.

Fear factor

Fear is the theme of director Nagesh's debut Tamil film (he has directed three in Telugu) Thigil. Two real-life incidents form the film's storyline. Shot in a forest, the film features Sindhura Gadde (Heyy Babyy with Salman Khan), former Miss India-World, as a CBI officer who investigates the sinister goings on in the forest. “It throws light on the mystery of aghoras, who eat the flesh of corpses, and on natural diamonds found once a year, deep inside a forest in Andhra Pradesh. These developments spell fear and doom,” says Nagesh.

Lots on her platter

After Valmiki and Ayyanar, Meera Nandan has director Chellamuthu's Suryanagaram due for release and Kaadhalukku Maranamillai, under production. In Malayalam, she's busy with Yathra Thudarunnu, a heroine-centric art film where she supports Lakshmi Gopalaswamy, and Seniors, a commercial film directed by Vaishak. Meera also has a Telugu film Jai Bolo Telengana awaiting release. “I have enjoyed doing Tamil films, and there are two projects I'm discussing with producers. Hopefully, these will be finalised soon,” says the actor.

Doctor or actor?

She wants to be a doctor, and takes up acting only when good roles come her way. “But,” says Thananya, “you never know how the future will shape up. While I was in my second year in Medicine, I was spotted by director Rajamohan and offered a role in Kungumapoovum Konjumpuravum. I took it up only because the shoot was during my summer holidays, and didn't disrupt my studies. Moreover, the role was quite challenging.” Now, in the final stages of her stint as a house surgeon, she's busy completing Veyilodu Vilayadu. “The character I play in this film opposite Mahesh (Angadi Theru) is that of a powerful woman, and I asked myself, ‘why not?'” Doc or star? We shall wait and watch.

A sound role

While in college, he started his career as a mimicry artiste with his own troupe, Mimic Badavas. In 2005, he was offered a role in K Balachander's Poi. In his second film, Chennai 600028, ‘Badava' Gopi, as he came to be known by then, did a cricket commentator's role. “Valmiki was my third film, and I did a serious role in it. I had to wait six years to portray a character close to my heart — as a mimicry artiste, in Radha Mohan's Payanam,” says Gopi.

Keywords: Tamil cinema