Since her first film, directed by Sridhar, she has acted with some of the doyens of the film industry, including MGR, Sivaji Ganesan, Gemini Ganesan, Muthuraman, Jaishanker, Ravichandran, Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan in Tamil; Sathyan, Prem Nazir and Madhu in Malayalam; N.T. Rama Rao, Nageswara Rao, Shoban Babu and Krishna in Telugu; and Shanker Nag in Kannada. She has also written short stories, designed and directed television serials and has been part of the national jury for the selection of best films. But right now, ‘Venniraadai’ Nirmala is consumed by dance. “So far, I’ve performed six full-length ballets — Sri Andal, Vasavadatta, Sri Valli, Tagore’s Kusum, Bharathi Kannamma (over 100 performances), Radhayin Kannan and Om Nama Sivaya. On New Year, I’ll be performing Radhayin Kannan at the ISKON temple in the city. Dance is taking me places. In fact, when I set up my dance school in Thiruvallur, I did not expect the kind of overwhelming response I got. The enthusiasm of the students takes me that far to teach them,” she says.

Fighting piracy

In what could be a significant move against piracy, Konnectcorp International presents Konnect +, a platform that aims at providing viewers abroad a chance to watch Indian films from the comforts of their home.

Rathienavelu Kumar, one of the directors of the company, says, “Digital delivery at affordable costs with an open-ended time-frame for exhibition, has spurred entertainment commerce abroad. This has opened an opportunity of delivering Indian movies to Indians outside India. Digital delivery will also benefit small films, which do not get an opportunity to reach overseas audience.” Konnectcorp is forging ahead with nearly 500 Tamil and Telugu films, including recent releases. This opportunity may enhance the overseas earning potential of films.

Mimicry as therapy

Actor Chinni Jayanth is thrilled to have been conferred an honorary doctorate by the Open International University for Alternative Medicines. The mimicry artiste-actor says, “The university told me that mimicry too was therapy for various ailments. I’m particularly delighted to be the first film artiste to bag this honour.” Chinni Jayanth is also a film director and producer.

60 for a film!

It’s not uncommon for a film to be produced by even five people. But, in perhaps a first, the film Marumugam will see as many as 60 producers! The film’s director S. Kamal says, “All my friends from school pitched in for my first Tamil film.” After completing his course at the Tamil Nadu Film and Television Institute, Kamal assisted directors Abhavanan and Aravindraj. And when he decided to direct his own film, his friends decided to pitch in. The film is a thriller revolving around a young man in love with a girl, but assumes she might leave him. Daniel Balaji and Preethy Das play the lead. Banuchander, Anoop and Uma Padmanabhan too are part of the cast.