Among those who trained under P C Sriram, and blazed a trail from Kollywood to Bollywood, Jeeva deserves special mention.
Making his debut as director with '12B,' he once again took the director's role in 'Ullam Ketkumay.' Despite a late release, the film is faring well and the happiness lights up Jeeva's face.
You have surmounted various hurdles to release the film. How do you feel?
I feel so much at peace (with a deep breath!). After all the problems we faced, especially the delayed release of a few years, it's heartening to note that the film is a super hit. When I see the fans enjoying my film, I must say my happiness knows no bounds.
Some feel 'Ullam Ketkumay' is like 'Autograph.' Do you think your film would have done better than this, if it had been released before 'Autograph?'
'Ullam Ketkumay' was conceived well before 'Autograph' and both are quite different in their presentation. So, I feel comparison between the two is not necessary. If both had been similar, my film would not have done well. But it seems to be a hit, is it not? So many people have complimented me on this film.
In general, we do not see college boys and girls mixing freely here. But in the film, we not only see them mixing freely, but also competing with them in so many fields?
Why not? What's wrong with that?
Maybe it does not reflect our culture.
What do you define as culture? As far as I am concerned, showing respect for parents and elders, giving love and affection, being modest and doing well in studies is what culture is all about.
Girl students make sexist comments in your film.
Why not? Repression makes a person do wrong. When everything is open, there is little room for mistakes. If men can describe women and comment about them, why can't it be the other way round also? Women also have their lies and likes. So, why should they hide them?
Real hot answers, so let's change track.
Many people have come out with criticism about the smoke in many scenes in 'Sachin.'
That's for the fantasy effect. But I must admit that it was unnecessary in the airport scene. From the beginning we knew it was a mistake, but there was no time to set it right, so we let it be.
Is it true you are next going to make a film starring Madhavan?
You will hear the details eventually. So, it is better not to speak about it now.
You are cameraman for which films now?
Lingusamy's 'Sandaikozhi,' and Gautam's 'Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu.' I love to work with a film lover like Kamal. After 'Indian,' to be working with Kamal in 'Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu' makes me extremely happy.
Which do you think is easier? Cinematography or direction?
Both are easy. As long as you are involved in your work, any work will be easy. Direction is easy for me, but I feel there's lots more to learn.
You have worked in Hindi and Tamil films. Can you tell us what's different between the two?
Work on Hindi films is at an easy pace, whereas Tamil films get done at a brisk pace. Since many technicians from Tamil cinema are now working in Hindi films, the pace of work in Hindi films seems to be quickening.
You have won a name as good cinematographer. Do you desire national recognition?
'Abhimanyu,' my first film in Malayalam should have got the national award. Thanks to politics, the award slipped from my fingers. Since then, I have lost faith in national awards. It has no fascination for me anymore.
Many who have trained under your guru P C Sriram, have made films on their own. Among them, is there anyone's work that you particularly admire?
Hmm….the only one who has impressed me is PC Sriram sir.
Both your films '12B' and 'Ullam Ketkumay' are full of fantasy. Don't you want to take films with lot of sentiment thrown in?
On no account do I wish to show sadness or regret in my films. One should be jolly. My aim is to make people happy and I will never deviate from that path.
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