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Updated: May 28, 2011 18:55 IST

Game for challenges

  • M. L. Narasimham
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Kaushik Babu
Kaushik Babu

Kaushik Babu is the first Telugu actor to play a lead role in a Malayalam movie

Do you know who is the most popular actor among the young audience in Kerala today? It is Allu Arjun through his Telugu starrers dubbed into Malayalam. Now, taking that popularity to the next level is child actor-turned-hero Kaushik Babu. He is playing the lead role in the Biju Lal-directed Malayalam movie, Nada Brahmam. Kaushik Babu claims that he is the first Telugu actor to play a full length role as a hero in a Malayalam movie.

What made his debut in Malayalam film industry more attractive was that he is donning a dual role, not many debutants get that kind of an opportunity. One of the characters represents the contemporary youth, Bala, heading a software company and the other is a traditionalist Krishna, a mridangam vidwan. “There is so much of diversity in these characters. While as Bala I have to be stylish, and dynamic, as Krishna, I have to display subtleties underplaying the role. I am game for challenges,” says Kaushik who shot into fame with his portrayal of Lord Ayyappa in the mega serial that made him a star overnight in the South.

Kaushik says that he is basically a director's actor. “I strongly believe that whatever role it may be the audience should have a feel of the character and not the actor who is playing it. Malayalam filmmakers are known to bring out realistic acting. When I go even a little bit out of bounds in emoting, they say smilingly: “it is not a Telugu film that you are doing.” It is not to belittle our cinema but we tend to be melodramatic in some scenes while they tend to down play their emotions.”

Kaushik also bagged the title role in J.K. Bharavi's Jagadguru Adisankaracharya. “In Kerala, they call Kaushik Babu as ‘kutty NTR.' The legendary N.T. Rama Rao was popular in Kerala through his dubbed mythology films. Kaushik's discipline and dedication will take him to higher places in the industry,” feels J.K. Bharavi.

Kaushik's role model is Kamal Haasan. Like the veteran, he too started his career as a child star. After a couple of television serials like, Kalankitha' (debut) and Manoyagnam' Kaushik moved to feature films with E.V.V. Satyanarayana's Chala Bagundi. He won a Nandi award as the best child actor for Takkari Donga.

As he grew up acting became a passion for him but he did not leave studies. He is pursuing B.Com (computers).

He is not a product of a film institute and did not go learn any crash course in acting. Kaushik says he learnt acting on the sets from his directors. He learnt the intricacies of Kuchipudi and Western dance forms after he became a star.

An ace gymnast it is interesting to note that he mastered the art of dialogue delivery and diction by practicing the lengthy dialogue of NTR in his mythological movies and the speeches of Swami Vivekananda.

In an industry dominated by the scions of stars and producers it is not easy to step in and win some recognition.

“Without any Godfather I made it into the industry and in the same way Kaushik Babu will go places with talent, dedication and devotion towards his profession,” said veteran Dasari Narayana Rao in the media meet organised at the launch of Kaushik''s website at film chamber auditorium recently.

Keywords: Telugu cinema

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