Former Miss Kerala Indu Thampy talks about debuting in tinsel town with Father’s Day
It's been a short journey from the catwalk to the silver screen for Indu Thampy. After wowing her way to the Miss Kerala crown in 2010 with her beauty and brains, the sprightly youngster, a native of the city, sashays straight into Mollywood with her debut film, Father's Day, which hits screens on Friday. Naturally, Indu is over the moon.
“Yes, the Miss Kerala title was a stepping stone into Mollywood but getting a break is never easy. And worse, what is the guarantee that even if you are offered a break, that particular role/movie will be any good?” asks Indu, adding: “You've got to choose the right movie and the right kind of role, and be prepared to wait to see it all through. I was prepared to wait and I am glad that I waited for a film like Father's Day to make my debut.”
In Father's Day, scripted and directed by scriptwriter Kalavoor Ravikumar of Ishtam, Swa. Le., and Nammal-fame, Indu plays the “pivotal role” of Neenu, a college student caught between her love for Seethalakshmi (played by Revathy), a college lecturer who is like a mother to her, and the enigmatic Joseph K. Joseph (newcomer Shahin), whose entry into her life throws Seethalakshmi into a tailspin.
“Neenu's is a peculiar character who is caught in a dilemma. She knows both sides of the story, wants to help Seethalakshmi and Joseph solve their issues, but because of certain circumstances, she is helpless. Otherwise, she is like any other heroine – young, smart, modern, and mature beyond her years,” says Indu, who “relished” the opportunity to “learn from actors of the calibre” of Revathy and Lal (who plays the lead role in the film).
“They all were very considerate to me, especially Revathy chechi who was such a big sport and always had a kind word to say whenever I got flustered. And that's despite me boring her silly, enacting her scenes from Kilukkam!” says Indu, who adds that her time in front of the camera was also a great way to learn a lot about herself from herself!
“I realised that if I put my mind to something then I can do it. I surprised myself when I discovered I could tap into the so-called layers in me, and well… act! It really comes down to not thinking of acting as a job. Just think that you're there to have fun, in front of the camera and you can see yourself going beyond boundaries,” says the peppy youngster, a student of literature at All Saints College in the city. Indu faced the camera for the first time for the title role in Annabella, yesteryear actor Ambika's maiden directorial venture.
“It was a challenging role; a fantastic experience. Annabella is (perhaps) Malayalam cinema's first ever POV – Point of View – film and it has been shot in a different way. We actors also got to hold the cameras!” gushes Indu. Annabella narrates the tale of a United States-born and raised Christian girl, who marries a Hindu, and comes to Kerala to meet his family. “It's a short and poignant story about the trials and tribulations she faces,” says Indu. The film, in which the petite actor stars along with a bunch of newcomers, is currently in the post-production stage and is set to be released in a couple of months.
She has got a few other projects in the pipeline, including a Tamil film, about which she is not too willing to spill the beans. “Language is not a barrier for an actor. If the story is good and there is enough of a challenge in it for me then nothing will hold me back,” she emphasises. “However, I am a conservative person and I will not go below a particular standard that I have set for myself. And I don't mind waiting for the right roles to come along.” Right now, it's time to wow tinsel town.