He is a big name down south but when it comes to Hindi films, success still eludes R.Madhavan. Despite having worked in two Hindi films Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein and Dil Vil Pyar Vyar, he is in need of that one film that will make his name synonymous with success.
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And the big ray of hope comes in the form of Ramji Londonwaley where he gets to play the solo male lead of the film with an author-backed role. Madhavan talks about what it takes to carry off a role with the whole story depending on you.
How easy or difficult was it to play a character once again in Hindi that you had already played in Tamil?
I think it was easier to play the character in Hindi as opposed to Tamil because even in Tamil, the character was supposed to be from a different dialect of Tamil, and the accent is far different from what I am used to. So for me it was slightly more difficult to play the character in Tamil than to play it in Hindi.
Ramji Londonwaley, why such an unconventional title?
I think it's a brilliant title because once you hear it you wont be able to forget it. The identification is phenomenal as far as the movie is concerned and the entire credit for coming up with such a brilliant title should go to Sanjay Dayma, who I think has done a brilliant job with the title, the identification will be instantaneous.
In the era of multi-lettered film titles, Ramji Londonwaley is a clear and crisp title.
How cool were you at grasping the Bihari dialect? You seem to be doing that flawlessly through the trailers.
I was born and brought up in Bihar so the accent comes easily to me.
Do you think Ramji Londonwaley explored the comic abilities in you to the fullest?
I think Ramji Londonwaley is by far one of the best films that I have done. It has given me the opportunity not only to do comedy and emotion but also to make it real. I feel it has been a long time since we saw films like Angoor and Chashme Badoor where the effort was not put into making people laugh by keeping a gun on their head.
It was made such that the comedy just slipped into you and you burst out laughing. Ramji… does not become loud. It becomes irritating then. I am glad that this film gave me the opportunity to explore my comic capability.
After multi-hero projects like RHTDM and Dil Vil Pyar Vyar, you play the solo lead in Ramji. Did you enjoy being the central character in a Hindi film finally?
Yes, I think it is going to be an acid test for me as a performer. In RHTDM I shared the screen with Saif Ali Khan and Dia Mirza and in Dil Vil…, I shared screen with a lot of other bevy of talent. In Ramji… I am in your face throughout the movie.
I think in today's times, to carry off a role with the whole story depending on you is a huge risk to take. But I am hoping that it will come out well because I honestly believe that the success of the film doesn't depend on the number of characters that are popular in the film but highly on the story and screenplay and the way the film unfolds and how it touches you. So hopefully we will be able to provide you with wholesome entertainment throughout the film.
What is your recipe for an entertaining film?
I am the kind of guy who believes that films are supposed to be entertainment. I do not subscribe much to movies that leave you with a lingering feeling, make you feel angry or depressed. I am not yet ready to make films like that.
I have grown up with films that are entertaining. Since I am such a huge fan of entertainment, I believe that the films that I do should also be entertaining, people can talk about it for three days and forget about it.
What about a 'rapid fire'?
Well… let's go for it
If you had to choose only one what would you choose
– Ramji Londonwaley or Nala Damyanthi?
– `Inbasekar` in Ayitha Ezhuthu or Lallan in Yuva?
– Kamal Hassan or Amitabh Bachchan?
Not a diplomatic answer but right from my heart, both of them. They are icons of the industry. I am totally in love with both, I can't choose between the two of them.
Is a 'gajar ka halwa' without sugar actually possible?
Of course it is! I will share the recipe with you as soon as the film releases.