Director Suseendiran
Interviewer : Inian | Camera : Balaji | Text : Jyothsna Bhavanishankar
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Director Suseendiran is on a roll. Having carved a niche for himself as a successful director in his first two outings – Vennila Kabbadi Kuzhu and Naan Mahaan Alla, he is doing his third film Azhagar Saamiyin Kudirai for Gautham Menon’s production house. Suseendiran discusses with us his filmi journey.

Tell us something about yourself

My dad is a driver and two of his brothers are in cine field. I came into the film industry because of my uncles. My uncle did a film but it was never released. Hence he dissuaded me from entering the industry. However, I did not listen to him as I was adamant to have a film career and joined as an assistant director to ST Saba when he was doing a film called Naam. Later I joined Abavaanan in his Irandu Kangal and with Ezhil in Deepavali. Although I worked in three films, my contribution to the script and story discussion was more.

How did Vennila Kabbadi Kuzhu happen?

After I worked in Deepavali, I struggled hard and completed the script for Vennila Kabbadi Kuzhu and through a friend I met Lakshman and with his help, I finalized the cast, technicians, locations and everything but a producer for VKK. My friends used to tease me for this. But I believed that when I am completely ready with everything, the rest is easy. And again through Lakshman I met Anand Chakravarthy who liked the script of VKK and that’s how the film was born.

What are the struggles that you faced?

I faced the struggles that all debut directors face. It is very difficult to execute a project. There are very many troubles which are all normal and are not exclusive to me. When a film gets completed, it crosses all these hurdles to reach the finishing point. There were many negative talks about VKK but I was confident that it will do well and VKK was created with such a hope.

What gave you the courage to go in for newcomers?

Kadhal and Paruthiveeran gave me the courage. These films had really done well which is the main reason for me to go in for an all new cast. More than me, a producer should come forward to make a film with newcomers. That is very important. I wanted new faces to bring in a realistic feel. If an established actor features in a film, the audience views only the artiste and not the character. My script demanded new faces and I chose them.

Kadhal and Paruthiveeran gave

me the courage

How did you shoot your next film with Karthi?

I was to do Azhagar Saamiyin Kudirai after VKK and the work was on. But for some reasons, it did not commence. There were many talks about financial viability. That’s when I decided I will go in for a film with a star and then come back to do ASK. I readied a script with city backdrop which was Naan Mahaan Alla. And I wanted an artiste around 25-26 years who has not earlier acted in city flicks and Karthi fitted the bill perfectly. I told him the story and he liked it.

How do you conjure up your screenplay?

When I wrote the script for VKK, I was keen that the film should appeal to people who do not understand Kabbadi. I know that Kabbadi is a dying sport. But for the audience, the film should move forward with its emotions and characters despite the lack of knowledge on Kabbadi. I have been a part of various discussions and have a fair idea on how the screen play should proceed, where the audience would applaud and things like that. I wrote the screenplay keeping in mind the response of the audience in combination with my idea. That’s how I work. My current screen play may not appeal to me after ten years. After ten years, I need to make my story based on the conditions that would prevail then like how Mani sir travels along every trend.

Gautham Menon said ASK is

100% success

What was Gautham Menon’s reaction to Azhagar Saamiyin Kudirai?

Azhagar Saamiyin Kudirai is the novel penned by Bhaskar Sakthi. When I narrated the story to Arjun, he liked it and referred me to Madan, one of the producers of VTV. I told him the story of ASK which he loved and started discussing about the financials. I told him that I can talk about the money related matter after the release of NMA. Later on I told the story to Gautham sir and he opined that it was fresh with no single routine stuff. Gautham Menon said ASK is 100% success and is very happy to produce it.

What do you like about Gautham Menon? Did he correct your script?

When I was narrating the story of ASK, I expected Gautham Menon to come up with some of his ideas as he is an established director himself. However, he never made a single correction and said that if I make the film the way I told him, it would be a super hit.

Tell us something about Azhagar Saamiyin Kudirai

I am very happy to do ASK. Mostly, directors will miss their second film. I worked carefully in my second film too and fortunately for me, Naan Mahaan Alla also has received good response. My third film is Azhagar Saamiyin Kudirai. I have been receiving mixed reactions about me from everyone. But the answer to everyone lies in the release and success of ASK which I promise will be loved by the audience and will be a complete family entertainer. Some films will have all the ingredients of success and ASK is one of them.

Some films will have all the

ingredients of success and ASK

is one of them

I don’t have any story right now

Future projects?

To be very honest, I don’t have any story right now. After ASK, I am planning to try a different genre with a different artiste. After VKK, NMA happened and now I am into ASK. I will take a breather after ASK and will do my fourth film patiently.

Do you have stories for Ajith or Vijay?

I do have stories for Ajith and Vijay. It is wrong to think that Ajith and Vijay will do only mass scripts. One needs to tell a story that would impress them. When I will be doing a film with Ajith or Vijay, it will not be a routine one but a different one.

I do have stories for Ajith and


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