INTERVIEW Actor Madhavan is busier than ever — endorsing products, supporting causes and being choosy about scripts
H opping cities, changing planes has become a way of life for R. Madhavan. Madhavan supports many causes and has eight products to endorse, in between films, just so he's not forced to do a film for money.
“I take my own time to decide on the story. So obviously, one film a year. I am still waiting for that one script to hit me on the head and make me jump up with excitement this year. There's always one story that just begs to be made at one point of time, and you can't see beyond it. If there were that many great scripts to go around, I wouldn't have to wait for one year to do a film. I would do a good film every three months. I've done only eight films in Hindi in 10 years. The audiences are very intelligent, and we need to make a film intelligent enough for them.”
Did he have any inhibitions playing the sap in “Tanu Weds Manu”, especially when film business calls for tough alpha-male superheroes saving the world? “It's never only the role, it's always the whole story. So, when Anand Rai came to me with the story, I knew it was a rockstar of a film because it wasn't the clichéd sort of a character. Not many would have taken up the role. I loved it when Anand pitched it to me, and I knew I wanted to do it.”
Faith in Kamal Hassan
Madhavan also won plenty of acclaim for his performance as the drunk suspicious boyfriend in “Manmadhan Ambu”. “Kamal sir has always been kind to me. Even with ‘Anbe Sivam'. I worship the man, and he reciprocates with equal warmth. He was the first guy to call me and say: ‘You will walk away with all the laurels'. He and Gautami complimented me on my work much before the release of the film. So, he knew what he was doing.” Though Madhavan had tasted moderate success as a producer for “Evano Oruvan”, he has no immediate plans for production. “I'm not meant to be a producer right now. I am just enjoying being on top of the food chain.”
Does he miss being Mani Ratnam's mascot, now that he has shifted base to Mumbai?
“I haven't been Mani Ratnam's mascot,” he laughs. “It's just been a happy co-incidence that lasted five films. He's the kind of director who will never do injustice to his film because he knows somebody. If his film requires him to make amends with his worst enemy, he will do it for the sake of the movie. That's how committed he is.”
He seems to be enjoying interacting with fans on Twitter as @ActorMadhavan. “The feedback is instantaneous. So when a new promo or film is out, you know whether it is working or not. You don't need the trade guys or the critics or the media to tell you. That's the beauty of social networking. But, I don't let it interfere with my day-to-day life. When I have something to say, I put it out there.”