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Wish I could do a Game of Thrones: Jiiva

Jiiva  is supremely confident of his abilities. He is trying out the horror genre for the first time with his upcoming film, Sangili Bungili Kadhava Thorae, but didn’t hesitate in choosing it at all. “Artistes should challenge themselves by doing a variety of films. I love trying different genres,” he says.

Jiiva really liked the script and says he plays “a nice, fun character.” Excerpts from a chat with the actor:

You don’t seem in a hurry to sign films.

That’s true. I like waiting for good projects to come my way. I also make sure that I get a proper break before I start something new. I’ve been in the industry for a long time, and I’ve well aware of what I am capable of and what I am not.  

What factors go into you choosing a film?

I never ask myself if it will be a commercial or a critical success. I’m here to entertain the audience. I only think about that. I’ve done 27 films so far and each one of them is close to my heart. Sure, there are films I’ve regretted doing, and I can’t name them, of course.

But even today, when I tweet about films that were considered average, I get tremendous response. Some scenes in my not-so-good films are celebrated on YouTube. So, I guess I’ve got the confidence to stop being self-critical. (Smiles)

Tell us about Sangili Bungili…

I play a real estate broker. The film also has Soori, who’s been given a makeover. It’s going to be a fresh film. More than it being a horror-comedy, Ike (the director) is convinced that the film is about the values of living in a joint family.

There was a period when you were acting in films like Kattradhu Thamizh and Raam. Do you think you can do them now?

Why not? If a good script comes my way, sure. But I’d definitely not want to do sequels to such films. Also, I think that when people talk about success, they need to define it–do they mean aesthetic success or monetary success?

Yes, I do think there is an audience for my offbeat films. But films like Thenavattu, Singam Puli, E and Thirunaal, which have brought me a lot of love from the B and C-centre audiences are equally special for me.

Unlike some other actors, you don’t seem to have one or two filmmakers you keep going back to make films with.

I guess that’s because I don’t go out of my way and keep in touch with people. Director Rajesh and I, for instance, kind of lost touch. And then, when he called me for Kadavul Irukaan Kumaru to do a cameo, I accepted it. But we never discussed any future plans. I think it’s a bad habit. (Laughs)

You come from a family of means. How much do monetary considerations affect your film choices?

To me, only the appreciation and recognition I get from my film matters. Profit is secondary. My appa has a lot of money. We’ve done many successful films. At the same time, loss illama padam pannanum. Also, I want to do something like Game of Thrones. Those actors get the opportunity to live in the skin of a particular character for a long time.

Rumour has it that you play a hacker in your next film, Kee.

Yes. But I’ve not yet mastered the art of hacking. (Smiles). The film deals with forgery, blackmailing and highlights the cons of technology. It’s something on the lines of Black Mirror (TV series). Since we are all completely besotted with Facebook and Twitter, I think this is a great time to do such a film.

You seem to always play characters who’re younger than your real age.

(Laughs) Hey, that’s because I don’t look my actual age. That said, I develop my role according to the film and try not to fall back on what I’ve done in my previous films. I do not follow any formula. My choice of characters depends on the excitement I get when I know them.

Do you feel like you owe filmmakers who’ve given hit films with you?

I am what I am today because of my directors. I try to be mindful of that.

Any film you regret not doing?

Mouna Guru. But Arulnithi has done a fantastic job. So, I guess it was destined for him.

Source: The New Indian Express