Iconic actor and filmmaker Kamal Haasan thanked all those who taught him the various aspects of filmmaking and also his family for having stood by him through the years, in his first interaction with the media on Sunday, after being conferred the Padma Bhushan, India’s third-highest civilian honour.
Speaking to journalists at his office on Eldams Road, Mr. Haasan turned nostalgic when he said that he had spend several important moments of his life musing about his future in the very backyard he was addressing the media in.
“I have sat on these very stairs as a child and wondered if I would ever make it big in films,” he said. “So many things have happened in this very place. And today I am honoured that I have been conferred this honour. India is a country where talent flourishes everywhere. I consider myself lucky that I am even in this list when so many deserving candidates have not yet made it.”
He also thanked all his mentors, and made a special mention of veteran theatre artist T.K. Shanmugam and filmmaker K. Balachander for their roles in shaping his future. “I have been very lucky to be in a field where people paid me a salary and taught me my craft.”
On whether he felt that the Padma Bhushan award was delayed (he was conferred the Padma Shri in 990), he said: “I have always had to wait a while to get things. It is nothing new. I am honoured nevertheless.”