Indrajith is on a roll of roles. His Naku Penta Naku Taka hits theatres today.
For a while now actor Indrajith has been exploring new territory in filmdom, and that’s not least because his latest film Naku Penta Naku Taka, is set in Kenya, hitherto an unexplored destination in Mollywood. The techie-turned-actor has been one of Malayalam cinema’s most dependable performers, one who is not afraid to experiment and one who has not been given his due. His recent career graph that includes roles as diverse as pious Father Vincent Vattoly in Amen, hot-headed Vattu Jayan in Left Right Left and fearsome Gopinath Menon in Ezhamathe Varavu, all of which left an impression, even though some of the films themselves did not, is a testament to his stellar histrionic skills.
“I only want to be a part of good cinema,” says Indrajith, during the shoot of debut director Jean Markose’s Angels in the capital city. “A good cinema, in my book, is a film that will stand the test of time; roles such as Vattu Jayan and Vattoly, which will be with me till the end of my days. Even though both the films released last year, I keep getting calls and texts complimenting me on my work. I don’t think such roles – and films – will ever fade from the collective memory of Malayalam movie buffs. These are the kind of roles that I aim to do. Whether a film does well or not, is an entirely different matter altogether, which, in this day and age, depends a lot of different variables, all of which have to fall together at the same place at the same time,” explains the actor.
Indrajith feels that Naku Penta Naku Taka, the title of which in Swahili means ‘I Love You, I Want You,’ and set to be released today, will be another landmark film in his career. The film has been directed by Vayalar Madhavan Kutty and written by Tamil-Malayalam author Jeyamohan.
It is said to be a humorous tale of a Kenya-based Malayali’s rocky quest to find a bride and certain incidents that follow when he brings his new wife to Africa, much to her reluctance. Indrajith plays the role of Vinay and Bhama plays his wife, Shubha, while Murali Gopy, Anusree, and yesteryear actor Shankar don significant roles in the film.
Indrajith, who is a keen travel buff, and currently on vacation in Europe with wife actor-fashion designer Poornima, can’t stop gushing about the great time the cast and crew had on location in Kenya.
“It’s a colourful country, where Indians have contributed much to the culture and way of life. In fact, there is a saying in Swahili, which refers to the enterprising nature of Indians. All of this has been captured on camera. There is a dangerous side to the country too. A few days after we landed there was a terrorist attack in Nairobi’s Westgate Shopping Mall. We were all shocked out of our wits but mightily impressed by the resilience of the Kenyans, who just went back to their normal routines the next day. One of my most memorable experiences was a trip to the Masai Mara wildlife sanctuary. We landed on an airstrip in the middle of the savannah and sent a herd of zebras scattering!” says the actor.
Post Naku Penta… he’s got three upcoming films this year, each of which promises to be different. In Rajeev Nath’s Rasam, a film on food and fun, in which he plays a Namboothiri cook, he shares screen space with Mohanlal.
In investigative thriller Angels, he once again dons the role of a cop, this time as one plagued by his demons. He stars in the lead along with Asha Sharreth and Joy Mathew in the film. And in the thriller Double Barrel – Erattakuzhal, he teams up again with Amen and City of God director Lijo Jose Pellishhery, his brother and actor Prithviraj, and Amen co-star Fahadh Faasil.
“Double Barrel is a Pulp Fiction-esque movie set in Goa. Prithvi and I play the characters Pancho and Vinci. The film’s got a retro 70s glam to it, complete with Cuban cigars, bellbottoms and side-beards. It’s an exciting project and I am looking forward to it,” says the actor.