Actor Dileep is in a happy space with his kind of films and roles striking a chord with the audience.
With his kind of films clicking at the box office and a State award for the best actor in his kitty, Dileep, at the moment, is very much his own boss. It has been a good year for the actor-producer. If Mr. Marumakan did not disappoint his fans, his Mayamohini broke all box office records. Even though critics sharpen their clauses on his films, Dileep has the last laugh as his producers laugh all the way to the bank.
Speaking to FridayReview in a telephonic interview from the set of Kamath And Kamath, in which he is working with Mammootty and Dhanush, Dileep is gung ho as initial reports of My Boss indicate that the film is doing well at the box office.
Shying away from queries on My Boss, well, uncanny resemblance to the Hollywood flick The Proposal, Dileep says diplomatically: “I don’t know all that. You will have to ask Jeetu [Joseph], the director of the film. But I know for sure that it is a complete family entertainer that is devoid of any kind of double entendre. It is a laugh riot. Techie Manu Varma, my character in the film, is your regular guy-next-door with his own set of work-related problems that every one in the audience would be able to relate to.”
Mamta Mohandas, known for her intense roles, has tried her hand at humour in the film. Dileep says the two, working together after Arike, their previous film, had a good rapport as there “were no ego issues between us. If I had a suggestion she had no qualms about accepting it and, similarly, if she had one, I had no problems about considering it,” says Dileep. He points out that before he made his appearance before the camera, he had a fairly long stint behind the camera assisting filmmakers like Kamal and that has helped him as an actor too.
Does his expertise as one of the best mimicry artistes in Kerala help him to flesh out his characters and also switch roles between films without any difficulty? “The power of observation is something I have gained from my years of work as a mimicry artiste. Initially, on account of my great admiration for our thespians, they used to appear in my acting, even without my permission. Thespians Nedumudi Venu and the late Oduvil Unnikrishnan told me never to allow my talent as a mimicry artiste intrude into my work as an actor. Over the years, I think I have found my own style of working,” says Dileep.
But he adds that he prefers to concentrate on one role at a time instead of switching between films. Dates clash, according to him, when there are unexpected delays or problems in the shooting of a movie.
About his dream run at the box office, the actor attributes it all to the “supreme director above all of us”. “I don’t plan my films or choose my roles with an eye on awards or the box office. If I feel comfortable with the script and the director, I accept the role,” adds the actor.
Acting with Mammootty after a fairly long hiatus, Dileep, however, maintains that he never felt there was an interval as he is a regular visitor at the veteran’s home. “We meet for festivities and events and so Mammookka is more like family to me. Although we have not worked in a movie for some time, we have never been out of touch.”
Kamath And Kamath has the additional distinction of being Tamil star Dhanush’s first Malayalam film. Dileep signs off saying that his desire is to act in a wide range of films that entertain the audience.
As Sathya Sai Baba
“I am enacting a spiritual leader venerated by millions around the world. The shooting of the film has already begun in Hyderabad. I went to Shirdi and Puttaparthi on a kind of pilgrimage before I donned the greasepaint for the role. I have turned a vegetarian and teetotaller. It is an international venture, though it is a Telugu film directed by Kodi Ramakrishnan. As of now, we have not decided how or who will do the dubbing or gone into the nitty-gritty of other aspects of the film.”