Interview Movies

Anupama’s gradual transformation

Anupama Parameswaran

Anupama Parameswaran  

With ‘Vunnadhi Okate Zindagi’ gearing up for release, Anupama Parameswaran talks about feeling at ease in Telugu cinema

Anupama Parameswaran had spent the good part of a day earlier this week at Taramati Baradari, her first visit to the heritage site, for a photo shoot. “It was tiring, given the humidity, but great fun climbing the various flights of stairs and rocks for the shoot,” she says, when we catch up with her a day later. Engaging a stylist and going through the routine of prepping up each time she steps out for events or this photo shoot, are all what she calls a natural transformation that has come with the job.

She was the girl next door when she debuted in Alphonse Puthren’s Premam (2015) in Malayalam. “Just being a part of that film felt like a fantasy. Neither I nor Alphonse wanted me to look like a heroine. I had to look like a school going girl from the region. I didn’t thread my eyebrows, no bleaching and didn’t care if my hair was frizzy,” she says. Her makeover has been gradual and not one that came out of compulsion to ‘fit in’ into showbiz. “I am bad with shopping,” she laughs. “I enjoy watching other people turned out in their best. My attention is more on the technical process of filmmaking; I like to observe cinematography and direction. I don’t get worked up about things like getting tanned.”

Anupama has wrapped up Vunnadhi Okate Zindagi (VOZ) , directed by Kishore Tirumala, scheduled to release later this month. The film co-starring Ram, Lavanya Tripathi and Sree Vishnu, she says, bears no resemblance to Zindagi na Milegi Dobara despite a similar title. “It’s a film about friendship and love and brims with positivity,” she offers about VOZ shot extensively in Vizag, Kodaikanal and Italy. “The situations are close to reality and the film discusses the choices made by the characters.”

Though Sathamanam Bhavati that released early this year gave her a much-needed impetus as the film’s only leading lady, Anupama is refreshingly secure about sharing the screen with other female co-stars. “I think Sathamanam… is the only Telugu film that had me as the solo heroine so far. I am not afraid of being in two heroine films. I feel the story is the hero and all my choices have been based on the story and what I will be doing in it. I want to leave my signature in whatever role I do,” she emphasises.

In the last three months, she’s made several trips to Hyderabad to shoot for her films that include Krishnarjuna Yuddham by Merlapaka Gandhi starring Nani and will begin to work on Savyasachi with Naga Chaitanya and another new project with Sai Dharam Tej. “I feel at home in Hyderabad next to Kerala,” she notes.

Every now and then, she breaks into Telugu when she speaks. “I am more at ease with the language now and don’t break into a sweat if I am given lengthy dialogues,” she says. This is a huge learning curve from where Anupama began when she did her first Telugu film, playing the part of Nagavalli in Trivikram Srinivas’s A..Aa. In that brief role, she held her own and dubbed her lines. “Back then, I would have sleepless nights if I had to say even short dialogues the following day. Telugu was new to me and I would be stressed out.” She rates A…Aa as her turning point in Telugu. “People still remember me as Nagavalli. The film wasn’t an easy choice to make. It was a small part and somewhat negative. But Trivikram sir told me that my role will get noticed and I went ahead.”

In between her shooting schedules, Anupama is also pursuing a course in communication and English through a distance education programme. “I discontinued my graduation after the first year when I started shooting for A…Aa. I want to finish it now,” she signs off.

Why you should pay for quality journalism - Click to know more

Related Topics
Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Feb 28, 2020 11:37:35 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/anupama-parameswaran-on-vunnadhi-okate-zindagi-and-being-at-ease-in-telugu-cinema/article19839133.ece

Next Story