'Dhruva Natchathiram' will be series, says Gautham Menon [Interview]

'Dhruva Natchathiram' will be series, says Gautham Menon [Interview]
Director Gautham Vasudev Menon is back in action. Quite literally. For, after taking up a couple of romantic subjects in VinnaithaandiVaruvaayaa and Neethane En Ponvasantham, his upcoming film — DhruvaNatchathiram — will take you into a world filled with action, which is, as he puts it, ‘stylish but not brutal.’

The shooting for the movie, which will have an ensemble cast, including Parthepan, Simran, Sudhanshu Pandey, will kick start next week in the city. “I’ll be roping in 12 actors other than Suriya to play vital roles in it,” he reveals, “We’ll be shooting in Chennai, Delhi and in Kargil too.” If all goes well and the audiences like the lead character, Gautham has a plan in mind. “We’ll be making a series of films with Dhruv,” he says.

The interesting part is that Gautham first decided to work on a film with Suriya and then finalized the subject. “We discussed three scripts. They were Thuppariyum Anandhan, Ennai Nokki Paiyum Thota and Dhruva Natchathiram, and after discussions, we finalized the third one,” he reveals. Oscar-winner A R Rahman, who earlier worked with him on Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa (VTV), will team up with him again on this one. “We’ve started working on the tunes, first through the internet when he was abroad.We have now finalized a tune during a session in his studio at Chennai recently.”

The director’s last Bollywood outing was Ekk Deewana Tha, the Hindi remake of VTV, which did not meet with the kind of success that the Tamil one had. So, what went wrong? “Perhaps the casting,” he admits, “Had I roped in a hero like Ranbir Kapoor, or even an Imran Khan, the subject would have worked. Once I got done with the film, I thought we had a decent package on our hands, with Rahman’s music and all that. But, it didn’t click with the audiences there.”

Due to that, his next Hindi outing — which would have been the Bollywood version of Neethane En Ponvasantham — did not materialize. “The financiers backed out,” he says, “We’d already completed 70 per cent of the project but there was no way I could’ve finished the rest within the budget constraints I was asked to work under. For the Hindi version, we had Aditya Roy Kapur in the lead. I kept telling my team that he would be a hit with the audiences, especially the girls. I ensure that all my heroes should be liked be girls, and Aditya was one of those guys they’d fall in love with. Also, the lead girl, Samantha, was looking excellent in it.” So, now that Aditya is hot in Bollywood, will he revive the project? “Perhaps I should. As I said, I already have 70 per cent of the movie ready!”

If action is on top of his mind as a filmmaker, as a producer, Gautham’s juggling emotion, comedy and romance. There’s Ram’s Thanga Meengal, which tells the story of a dad and daughter, Premsai’s Tamilselvanum Thaniyar Anjalum, which is a comedy thriller and titled Courier Boy Kalyan in Telugu, and Vignesh Shivaa’s Naanum Rowdythaan that’ll chronicle the love story of a youngster.

So, does he like playing the part of a producer or a director? “A director, of course. As a producer, I let my directors be and just drop in once a while on set to see if all is well,” he signs off.


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