Kajal Aggarwal is on a roll. The actor who straddles the Tamil, Telugu and Hindi film worlds with ease talks about her upcoming projects — and of course, the men who matter
Kajal Aggarwal is not complaining. Instead she's delighted to studio-hop without any respite. Five significant projects in three different languages with some of tinseldom's most sought-after men… the actor is beaming.
“Celebrations can happen anytime. Work comes first. I don't have any regrets about having such an order of preference,” she says, snatching some time for a telephonic interview in-between frenetic shooting schedules in New Delhi.
Going by the projects and the names associated with them, it's clear that the Naan Mahaan Alla star's career graph is on an upswing at the moment. In Kollywood, she is working on K.V. Anand's Maatran, which has Suriya in the lead and A.R. Murugadoss's Thupaaki, which stars Vijay. Her back-to-back schedules include Special Chabbis opposite Akshay Kumar in Hindi and two projects — one each opposite Ram Charan Tej and Junior NTR in Telugu.
Most people find working on one big project itself demanding. Imagine being part of five simultaneously! It's possible only if the actor involved has lots of enthusiasm, loads of energy and adequate support from all quarters. Agrees Kajal, “I'm excited about working with two superstars — Suriya and Vijay. I'm equally thrilled about working with two fantastic directors Anand and Murugadoss. The other motivating factor is that I get to play two different roles. That's quite a challenge.”
Talking about the working styles of Suriya and Vijay, she says, “Both are extremely professional. They are hardworking and deeply involved in their work.” Fine, those are the similarities, but what about the differences? “Ah, that's a tough one,” she admits, before carefully stating, “Suriya is a stickler. You don't see Suriya on the sets, instead you see only the character he is portraying. Vijay too is a perfectionist with oodles of spontaneity.”
Talking about her directors, she says, “Anand is a total disciplinarian and believes in having several rehearsals. He subscribes to the view that practice makes a man perfect. Murugadoss, on the other hand, is a very lively person who believes in actors being themselves. Both, however, have one thing in common. They know how to get the best out of you.”
Kajal is more forthcoming when asked to compare her roles in the two films. “In Maatran, I play a young happy girl, who has an understanding of things. Certain incidents in her life make her aware of what the world is. In Thupaaki (Vijay is said to play the role of an encounter specialist), I play a chirpy, naughty girl who is in love with herself. ”
Her Bollywood project Special Chabbis is based on a robbery that took place in Mumbai in 1987. A man and his associates, posing as CBI officers, raid a jewellery store and walk away with jewels worth lakhs. “I play a fictitious character that was not part of the original incident. I play the love interest of the protagonist, who is clear about everything in his life, but me,” she says as she hurries back to complete her shot.
REEL CHALLENGE In Maatran, I had to speak in Russian apart from Tamil. So, a Russian trainer was flown in. Also, we shot some intense action sequences in Riga, the capital of Latvia, and a couple of places around it. And we had to shoot these sequences in freezing temperatures.