As ‘Arai Enn 305il Kadavul’ opens today, Madhumita tells malathi rangarajan she doesn’t mind waiting for meaty roles
Madhumita isn’t a go-getter. She prefers a cautious route to success, which explains why she’s done just about four Tamil films after her debut in Parthiban’s Kudaikul Mazhai. “I’ve rejected at least 15 offers after Kudaikul… I’m choosy and in no hurry at all,” she says. And her wait has begun to pay off. The stunner is the heroine of the much-hyped Arai Enn 305il Kadavul, which opens today. She also plays the lead opposite Ameer, director of Paruththi Veeran, who is turning hero with Yogi. And though she is working in Tamil films, Hyderabad continues to be her base. “I love Chennai. I’d never tasted dishes like Idiappam till I came here. Not that I’m a foodie, but such things are a lure,” she laughs. “And I didn’t know a word of Tamil when I first came down. Now I can read, write and speak the language!”
Friendly and taciturn, forthright and soft-spoken all at once, Madhumita intrigues you. “I am the silent kind. More like the heroine of Arai Enn 305il Kadavul, who doesn’t talk much initially. Only after getting into films have I begun to open up a little,” she smiles, hastening to add: “But I have my friends and family to confide in.”
Straddling studies and career with equal commitment, Madhumita is doing her MBA. “I’ve scored high marks in my first semester and am thrilled,” she says. But acting was never a career option till director Muppalaneni Shiva spotted her during a college cultural. After much discussion at home, she signed on. The film, Sandhade Sandhadi, was a hit. Her second, again in Telugu, Puttintiki Ra Chelli with Arjun, ran for 275 days. That’s when Parthiban’s Kudaikul Mazhai came her way. She looked ravishing in the film, but it wasn’t a major success. “It wasn’t a flop either,” she informs.
Director Ezhil cast Madhumita in Amudhae. “I was so moved by the climax that I wept even when he narrated the story. Sad it didn’t do too well,” comments Madhumita. Then came Englishkaaran… With Satyaraj and Namita, you butt in. “It did well. I was the heroine, but you seem to remember Namita’s presence,” she laughs. Naalai, her next, was again a hit and Madhumita had a substantial role to play in it. After which was Aani Vaer opposite Nanda. Set in Sri Lanka it has a heart-rending performance from the heroine. “John Mahendran, director of Vijay’s Sachin, gave me the role. Shot entirely on the strife-torn island, it made me count my blessings. People who have lost their limbs just move on with their chores, expecting neither help nor sympathy from anyone. I was so moved that I didn’t need glycerine to cry. What an experience!” she recalls. (Aani Vaer was released worldwide but not here.)
In all her films, Madhumita has had solid roles. “I don’t mind glamour. But I don’t plump for roles that leave no scope to perform,” she explains. When did modelling happen? “After my debut … But again I don’t accept too many assignments because I need time to study too.” How does it feel to be paired with Santhanam in Arai Enn 305il Kadavul? “In every film, I work with a different actor. Here, it is Santhanam. That’s how I look at it. It’s my role that matters. Arai Enn … showcases me in a completely different mould, the banner is Shankar’s S Pictures and the director is Simbudevan. What more can I ask for?I have lovely songs and Vidyasagar’s music is great. We shot a song sequence on a hillock in Kutralam — the heat was terrible. The next day’s shooting would be on a nearby hill, we were told. But it was a mountain and climbing was quite a task! By the time we reached the spot, we were famished,” she laughs.
What more about Arai Enn …? “I’m keeping my fingers crossed and eagerly waiting for the audience’s response,” she smiles.