I still don’t understand what a ‘Selvaraghavan film’ is: NGK director

(Laughs) They are flawed and real. You are sounding a tad philosophical. Why do they call it a block? Then, there was Mannavan Vanthanadi with Santhanam. I am doing what I want to do. Writers write. I like writing and there were days when I wrote more than 1,000 pages. When things don’t go as expected, it disappoints you. This time, there was a conscious effort. Look at Aboorva Ragangal. Your films have had strong female characters. I needed a break. I am all for it. How fulfilling has this journey been to you? We know each other really well. NGK was not about any political party but society at large. Suriya sir was wanting to work with me and NGK needed someone like him. They challenge themselves and the audience. But I took it easy. It is just the mindset. That phase was difficult. Maybe, you feel it is not right. I am into filmmaking only because of him. Not at all. Unless bright young minds come in, we can’t fix the system. I am one among them. Did you know Pudhupettai will emerge the cult classic that it is now? In fact, have always wanted to make a film on politics. NGK has many layers. He had his own magic. He constantly tries to improve his performance. How did you conceive NGK? Also, I like Yamini from Mayakkam Enna. (Laughs)

Comment(s) I heard you have never experienced writer’s block. Meanwhile, you directed Nenjam Marapathillai, featuring SJ Suryah. But it is not the same anymore. Advertising

As you get older, you become more philosophical. I would get beaten up for the smallest of things. Pick your favourite on-screen woman character. Sai Pallavi is a method actor. Because this is the first time you are collaborating with a ‘mass actor’. He belongs to the rare category of directors who made original films. It is fine as long as others like what I am doing. I wanted to put across a lot of things. Most of the writers in the industry are directors as well. We are all flawed, too. It’s imagination. Tell us about directing Sai Pallavi and Rakul Preet. With my films, the audience will identify themselves with the characters. Even today, there is no match for his style of making. He is my guru and godfather. Yes. Nobody wants to see an ideal human being on screen because nobody in real life is 100 per cent good. Even today more and more young people come up with different stories. That’s all right. I still don’t understand what a ‘Selvaraghavan film’ is. Advertising

Irandam Ulagam happened in 2013. Sometimes, well, it doesn’t happen. Six years seems a long time. It wasn’t an easy film to make. There are many people who love their art. Anything that comes from your heart. I never make films to deliberately fit myself into that. That’s for the audience to decide. (Laughs)
Weren’t you worried about losing connection with the audience? Dhanush and Karthi weren’t stars at that time. It is inevitable. I remember kissing his forehead when he was done with a song in NGK. Now you may feel tempted to ask if I am like my characters in real life. You are a writer first. Let’s see. Otherwise, I am satisfied. They do all sorts of crazy things out of their love for cinema. Women are far superior to men, and I have always admitted to this. More Explained

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That’s the catch. What does good cinema mean to you? (Smiles) I have been working since I was 21. I won’t rest till I make sequels to those films. To be honest, it is tough to keep the audience in mind when you write. Nowadays, I type. Previously, I have never made an effort to reach out. Was NGK a ‘safe’ film? That reflected in 7G Rainbow Colony. I get him. Any woman-centric film in the pipeline? The process of making films is actually emotionally draining. Suriya sir is a director’s delight. He gets me. Though it is a mix of reality and fiction, NGK is my take on the current political scenario. And there are some things you can’t write. The world belongs to the youth. I was mesmerised by her performance in Premam. Yuvan is a fantastic composer. Credit goes to Sneha, of course. They will know that this can happen in their lives. You forget everything and just let things be. (Laughs)
Kadhal Kondein (2013) was your directorial debut. The film didn’t do well and it took more than a year to come out of that zone. Advertising

Yes, Nenjam Marapathillai has been completed, but I am not responsible for its delay. You may want to watch it multiple times to understand the film better. For example, I didn’t have a pleasant childhood. You worked with K Balachander for a while. I stopped worrying about things that aren’t in my control. Sometimes, it is hurtful. And, Rakul is a wonderful performer. I would love to make one. The idea is to tell people what it is. You are known for your raw style of storytelling, but NGK was certified ‘U’. Was it pressuring to direct Suriya? It is not that I was idle. NGK marked your reunion with him after a decade. Krishnaveni in Pudhupettai. Still, people are excited about Pudhupettai and Aayirathil Oruvan. How does your creative collaboration with Yuvan Shankar Raja work? Also, it is unusual to see you direct a political drama. No. When I write, I think of myself as the character. Is NGK a Suriya film or a Selvaraghavan film? I simply worked on the film as a fanboy of his. The answer is ‘no’. Popular Photos

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It was a pleasure rather. (Smiles) We spoke a lot on the sets and became good friends. I have ideas. I had to rework the entire script once again post the announcement was made. Your protagonists aren’t normal people. When I started out, it was thrilling.