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I’m a fan of etymology but that is ruined by Twitter: Haasan

Why is there a sudden surge in productivity?

I wanted to start doing more films from 2012 onwards, but Vishwaroopam got delayed due to circumstances beyond my control. By the time the film was released, even Vishwaroopam 2 was complete. Then I got fed up and went hammer and tongs into other films, as I didn’t want to disappoint other producers. I firmly believe that it is possible for me to do four films a year.

Wouldn’t that be overkill?

Not really; (Robert) De Niro does six! I think it is not too difficult, and if you can survive, Darwin’s theory will have proved right… about the survival of the fittest.

Of late, you have resorted to writing your own stories for your films. Is there a dearth of good stories/scripts in the marketplace?

I became a writer by default. I couldn’t find the right subjects, and how often can I keep going back to K. Balachander for good stories? Cinema may be neglecting literature, but literature has not been neglecting films. The outcome is that there is so much of films in literature that very little pure literature is left. There are some good novels out there, but these are not written with a view on populist cinema/viewers.

Why have you suddenly got on to Twitter? You already have a big following on Facebook.

I have 5 million followers on FB. And, I have been watching the trend on Twitter; but I was worried that my privacy would be chewed up. Then, I realised that there is a choice on Twitter to use it as a personal platform.

So that you can express yourself better?

Actually no! It is too limiting for me. I am a great fan of etymology but that is ruined by Twitter.

Please tell me about your forthcoming projects.

Besides Vishwaroopam 2 , I am doing a trilingual (Hindi, Tamil and Telugu) with my daughter Shruti. This is a comedy film with action, directed by TK Rajeev Kumar. This breezy and very exciting film will start rolling in April, after which I will begin work on a thriller. So, this year too, I will have three releases.

What is your view on the conferring of Padma Vibhushan on Rajinikanth?

I am quite happy about this. It is not about competition. It is not a title. It is not for this year, or the last year, or for a period, or for the best films. It is a sign of respect that the country/government wants to give an actor for his years of contribution to the industry.

Incidentally, do you know that both Rajini and I got our Padma Shri even before a more deserving person like K. Balachander got his? It is unfair, but that is how it is, and even now, there are many more deserving people still in the queue.

Are film awards important to you?

I have always cherished and loved film awards. However big or small, I have always made an effort to attend these to receive the awards in person. They are given by people who appreciate your work, your fans and followers, and a panel of selectors who are deep-rooted in cinema. It is an acknowledgement of your work, and I will, somehow or the other, totter up on stage to receive it. It is like applause.

Technically and technologically, how do Kollywood films compare with those from Bollywood/Hollywood?

The content drives the look of a film. For instance, a James Bond film cannot afford to look like typical European cinema, say, like Bronson. You cannot make The Sound of Music look like Pulp Fiction . Going back to earlier times, I don’t think Balu Mahendra’s cinematography was any lesser than some of today’s technically superior films. In our industry, it is all very budget-driven, and we don’t spend too much money on colour correction and post-production. I remember, for my Dasavatharam , the cinematographer walked away without colour correction. He would not dare do that for a Bollywood production.

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Printable version | Jan 17, 2022 1:46:12 AM |

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