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Kids’ favourite star pitches in for a cause

Posted September 12th, 2018, 10:33 AM IST

Kids’ favourite star pitches in for a cause

Actor Sivakarthikeyan would soon be seen in an awareness video on ‘child safety and safe touch’, which talks about child abuse. The NGO said it chose the actor for the cause because he has a huge following among the youth and children and it felt people would take it seriously and the message would reach a lager section of society.

When contacted, the actor says he is aware the learning has to start at home. “It is a sensitive topic. Still it needs to be addressed. I have taught my little daughter about what’s good and bad touch and how to be cautious with strangers.”





Sivakarthikeyan’s career is just 12 films old and he is already an ‘A Lister’ reportedly commanding a salary of Rs 25 crores for a film and threatening now to breach into the highest category of top actors.

He is teaming up with director Ponram Perumal for the third time but attempting a period genre for the first time with Seemaraja. He spoke to DC when we caught him up on the sets of his next with ace director Rajesh.

“Rs 25 crores salary? Siva exclaims. “I wish I had taken such a huge amount. Jokes apart! Remuneration is not about hits. It’s about business my films make. When I am doing a big film, which commands a huge budget, I cannot demand a big salary. It will be a burden for the producers. I only take what I deserve. I am very particular that those who buy or distribute my films should also be profitable. I don’t think anyone as my competitor. Luckily, I have not faced such comparisons right from childhood. At home my parents will never compare me with anyone or my sister who also used to come first in the class,” the Varutthapadatha Vaalibar Sangam actor quips.

On how Seemaraja began, he says, “The movie talks about the kings who ruled the Singapatti palaiyams from Tirunelveli district. The idea started when Ponram sir went for a location hunt for our earlier movie Rajini Murugan. Incidentally, he had met the present zamindar of the place, who was so simple and down to earth. These zameens have done so much to our society like building schools, water bodies and several temples. He felt their good deeds needed to be told. That was the when Seemaraja was born. I play one of their offspring and it has been made in a commercial format.”

Is there a conscious attempt to promote you as a mass hero? Siva was quick to retort.

See those crucial period segments where I play a king appears for about 15 to 20 minutes only. The script demanded those action blocks and they were not forced ones. We still did not compromise on the fun and comedy quotient, which is my core strength. There are no punch or political dialogues in the film”

Your romance with Samantha Akkineni in the making video of Seemaraja seemed sensuous. Comment. “Really? Don’t compare this with her rural role in Rangasthalam. She comes as a PT teacher, a quiet and composed character. And it is a cute romance (smiles). She learnt Silmabam for her character and we have incorporated that also in the film.”

On Simran, he quips that the actress would give a shock to the audience. “Her never seen before role is such it will amaze everyone. We all were stunned seeing her perform on the shoot.”

Though the period segment appears only for 15 minutes, it was a big challenge to pull it off, Siva admits. “I added 5 kgs more. We shot for 18 days and needed to create everything from the sword to shields, costumes, huge open space, setting the crowd, great VFX work. The efforts will show up on the screen. I have spoken chaste Tamil and though it was tough, I loved and enjoyed every bit”.

The actor also says he took 15 days training to ride a horse. “I will be feeding him, talking to him every day. They read us very well and we must handle them well, look them in the eye and converse with them. But that chariot battle scene where I have to handle 4 horses — My God! The kind of speed they were running at, I found it very difficult.”

On continuing to manage to stay out of controversies, “I don’t smoke or drink in real life. You will never spot me in any of the parties. I am a home bird and if I have no work to do, you would only see me at home. I precisely advocate the same thing in my films. My scripts never demanded a smoking scene and I have also consciously avoided such scenes. In future also, I would try not to act in smoking scenes since kids and women throng the theatres to watch my films”.

Within a short period you have arrived as one of the top rung actors in Kollywood. How do you see your growth? “A lot of hard work has gone into it. Many good people are behind me. Besides, I take each step in cinema doing what people like the most. When I realised kids love my movies, I began to add something new to entertain them. I avoid certain things. I know nothing is permanent and also conscious that people have given me this place and renew myself every day to satisfy them. My responsibilities are more”.

On launching his own production company: “Yeah, the first film is Kanaa, which is about women empowerment. How a girl from an ordinary agricultural background who is passionate about cricket realises her dreams. My close friend and lyricist /singer/actor Arunraja Kamaraja is directing it. It is his script, which I thought should be told to larger audiences. In Tamil cinema, sports dramas are a rarity. I don’t want to borrow money and make huge budget films. I bankroll movies from my hard earned money. I have come up the hard way. I know the value of money”, he says in conclusion.

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