Indrajith Sukumaran charts new territory as an actor

Indrajith Sukumaran in the web series ‘Queen’

Indrajith Sukumaran in the web series ‘Queen’   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

With a slew of diverse roles, including a web series in which he stars as MGR, the Malayalam actor is on a roll

Indrajith Sukumaran entered Malayalam cinema playing the villain with consummate ease. He went on to prove his versatility as an actor, playing roles of different shades with panache. He believes that, at present, viewers look forward to watching substance on screen, irrespective of who is acting. After a brief hiatus, he is now part of some of the finest projects in Malayalam. Indrajith’s releases this year were Lucifer, Virus and Thakkol. And with the just-released web series, Queen, in which his character is presumably based on the legendary MGR, the actor is exploring new territory.

In an interview with Friday Review, the actor looks back at his screen journey and explains why the coming year could be pivotal in his career. Edited excerpts from the interview:

After a rather quiet 2018, when you had only one release, and 2019, you have a number of exciting projects in your kitty next year...

I took a short break to sit back, relax and listen to new stories. Even this year, there were not many releases of mine. But, currently, I am shooting for a couple of interesting projects. I believe 2020 is going to be a crucial year for me.

Is your character in the web series Queen modelled on MGR?

Queen is inspired by some real-life incidents and is not entirely based on any particular personalities.

How was your experience in Queen?

Absolutely fantastic. I had done my own research but had limited knowledge about the social and political history of Tamil Nadu. Interactions with the directors, Gautham Vasudev Menon and Prasath Murugesan, really helped me. They wanted me to present the basic structure of the character in my own style.

Indrajith Sukumaran in ‘Kurup’

Indrajith Sukumaran in ‘Kurup’   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

You acted in your brother Prithviraj’s directorial debut, Lucifer, this year...

Being an actor himself, he is clear about what he wants from every actor. I like directors like him who communicate clearly, since that obviates any room for confusion. It was he who had conceptualised that my character [Govardhan] should speak rapidly and be restless.

Although we are siblings, we are professionals too. If I am directing him in the future, the process will pretty much be the same.

Will your character return in Empuraan, the sequel to Lucifer?

I understand that some of the characters in Lucifer will be there in Empuraan. I hope mine will also be a part of it.

Tell us about your characters in Zakariya’s Halal Love Story, Srinath Rajendran’s Kurup and Rajeev Ravi’s Thuramukham?

I believe Halal Love Story is totally different from what I have been doing till now. Though it is a comedy, there are emotional layers as well. I am playing an investigating officer in Kurup. Thuramukham is being made on a grand scale and it is raw and real.

Was it strenuous while shooting for Aaha, which is based on tug of war?

Aaha is my first sports drama. I am appearing in an aged get-up and the tug of war portions come mainly in the flashback scenes. The basic premise has been inspired from the champion tug of war team, Aaha Neeloor. The storyline is essentially a mix of fiction and the great love that Malayalis have for the sport. While shooting, every time, both teams had to pull the rope for real and that was quite an effort.

You have said that when you started, you could have waited to play the lead or establish yourself by doing character roles. Are you happy that you opted for the latter?

Absolutely. Today, when people talk about me as an actor who can portray any kind of a role, it is because of the diversity of characters I have essayed. I could portray so many different characters because the audience hasn’t restricted me to any particular image.

Indrajith Sukumaran in ‘Thakkol’

Indrajith Sukumaran in ‘Thakkol’   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Does the constant comparison between you and Prithviraj bother you?

Although we started our acting careers almost around the same time, the routes that we chose have been different. Both of us have established ourselves in the industry in our own way. I don’t think there is any need for such comparisons.

After Virus, you are teaming up with your wife, Poornima, on screen again in Thuramukham?

She has a terrific role in Thuramukham, which could be a milestone in her career. But in both the movies, we don’t have any combination scenes. I am waiting for a project like that.

What do you look forward to in a script at this point of time?

In cinema, all you can do is to work hard and wait for good things to happen. I have been patient and this is the time when I am getting the most exciting projects in my career. I am doing Jeethu Joseph’s Ram with Mohanlal and Trisha in the lead. There is Irshad Parari’s Ayalvaashi, in which I am teaming up with Prithviraj. Karthick Naren’s Naragasooran is expected to release early next year. There are a few more projects that will be announced soon.

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Printable version | Apr 10, 2020 1:04:25 PM |

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