Movies

‘I want to impress the audience with my roles’

Joju George in a still from ‘Joseph’

Joju George in a still from ‘Joseph’   | Photo Credit: Special arrangement

Actor Joju George plays the lead in two of his upcoming movies

“What would you feel when somebody simply hands over Rs. 1 crore?” Joju George says with a guffaw. That was his reaction when asked about playing the lead in two upcoming Malayalam movies. The actor has come a long way from being a junior artiste and doing villain roles to becoming one of the bankable character artistes in Malayalam cinema, handling comic and intense roles with elan. He will be seen in main roles in Sanal Kumar Sasidharan’s Chola and M.Padmakumar’s Joseph.

Joju clarifies that he is not the hero in these movies. “I am not the typical filmi hero in these movies. At the same time there are other characters who are equally important. Both films are challenging for me because the characters are complex and, therefore, a new experience for me,” says Joju over the phone from Thodupuzha where he is shooting for Joseph.

Exciting character

His get-up for Joseph — grey hair, coloured contact lens and all — has already garnered attention. “Joseph, my character, is a 60-year-old retired policeman. The movie is based on real-life experiences of our scriptwriter Shahi Kabir, himself a policeman,” he says. The actor-producer adds that to play the age, he has taken his father, George Parekkattil, as the reference point. “I have been closely observing his body language and mannerisms for the character,” he says.

Meanwhile, this is Joju’s fourth role as a police officer this year, the others being in Poomaram, Kali and Njan Marykutty.

Njan Marykutty belongs to Jayasurya. I play Kunjippalu, a Sub Inspector, who plays an important part in the life of Marykutty, a trans person. I have lost count of the number of police characters I have played till date. Probably 50!” he adds.

However, Joju refuses to divulge details about Chola in which he is paired opposite Nimisha Sajayan. “I can’t elaborate on the character now. The typography of the title is unique. You read ‘Chola’ as ‘Chora’, meaning blood. So a lot of surprises are in store. The shoot will begin in July. Major sequences will be shot inside forests,” he says.

A great fan of Sanal’s body of works, Joju says that he was looking forward to working with the director. “After watching Ozhivudivasathe Kali, I had requested him to give me a role in any of his future projects. So when he called up saying there was a script, I immediately said ‘yes’. But he insisted that I should read the script. Well...he is known for making movies without a script!” he smiles.

With Padmakumar, he has had a long association. “I used to work as a junior artiste in those movies in which he was an associate director. He has always encouraged me as an actor and I am grateful to him for giving me Joseph,” he adds.

For Joju, who made his debut as a junior artiste in 1995 in Mazhavilkoodaram, it was his switchover from villainy to comedy that got him noticed, examples being Hotel California, Neram, Rajadhiraja, Pullippulikalum Aattinkuttiyum, Action Hero Biju and Udaharanam Sujatha. He turned a new leaf playing the egoistic husband in Ramante Edenthottam.

“Now, I want to impress the audience with my roles in Joseph and Chola. Even when success eluded me for many years, all that I wished for was that moment when people say good things about my acting. On this account, I have high hopes about these two movies,” he signs off.

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Printable version | Apr 5, 2020 8:01:14 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/joju-george-on-his-lead-roles/article24161251.ece

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