Kannada actor Vijay Suriya delves into the world of the visually impaired in Krishnamma Kalipindi Iddarini, his debut on Telugu television. Directed by Vijay Krishna, Krishnamma… on Star Maa, a remake of the Bengali serial Saanjher Baati is a love story. Without revealing much, he says over the phone, “My character Eshwar is not blind by birth but becomes blind due to an accident and develops a strong sense of hearing after this vision loss.”
Portraying the character without resorting to caricature or stereotyping, Vijay inhabits the world of sightlessness to evoke empathy. “The audience will not sympathise with Eshwar but the circumstances he is forced into.”
Vijay has done varied roles in Kannada films and television but never played a blind person. He accepted the role as a challenge and believes destiny had a role to play here. Vijay has been getting offers from the Telugu television industry for more than three years but never took it up due to the language barrier. Vijay reflects on different events that led to him entering the Telugu industry and says, things fall in place when the time comes. “Three random people told me to try Telugu television and my friends who worked in the Telugu industry said one can learn the language in four months and I got a call from the production house for Krishnamma…”
Since his acting debut with Crazy Loka in 2011, Vijay, a known face in the Kannada industry has been steadily inching his way towards stardom. With three films and six television serials, he is one of the few actors who effortlessly shifts between the two mediums. Citing British actor Benedict Cumberbatch’s example of performances in different mediums, Vijay says, “My mother, who also takes care of my work, tells me not to differentiate between television and cinema. Just do what has been offered in the early stage . Make choices later according to the projects and money. Be it television, movies, web series… an actor puts in the same effort, only the screen size changes.”
He played protagonist Siddharth in Agnisakshi, on Colours Kannada, which ran for six years and got him recognition. Expectedly it is also one of his favourite characters. “Viewers’ appreciation is a tonic to keep us going and drives the market.” A father to a three-year-old boy, he plays a reel dad in Kannada serial Namma Lachi currently aired on Star Suvarna.
From being an introvert to fulfilling his dream to be an actor has been a long journey. “I enjoyed dance performances and loved to be on stage but was too shy to talk about it.” He mustered the courage to tell his career choice to parents, who supported his decision to do a filmmaking course from Whistling Woods in Mumbai. “I have worked hard to be where I am now and my only goal is to be honest in my portrayals,” says Vijay, whose new projects include Veeraputra and an untitled film in Kannada.