My parents had a negative
approach to cinema
into film industry, Poo, Theneer Vidudi
finished my cinematography course from Chennai
Film Institute in 1990. I belong to the Valliyur
village in Thiruvaroor district. The only
ambition I had in life was to come to Chennai
and score music for a movie. That ambition
drove me to Chennai. Since my dad was a headmaster,
my parents were not in approval for my aspirations
in cinema. They had a negative approach towards
cinema. I convinced my dad and joined the
Film institute. And then I pursued my dreams to become
a music director. I also had an opportunity to meet
Ilayaraja at the Prasad Studios. That is when I came
to see how music is made for movies. It was totally
different from my knowledge. I did not think I could
do anything like that so I pursued a course in cinematography.
After that course I got a job as a central government
officer and my dad was very happy. Although I worked
for the government for about 15 years, I nurtured
my dream to become a music director. One fine day,
I decided this is not why I came to Chennai for. I
purchased all the equipments and learnt music on my
own. I did this after taking a sabbatical for 3 months.
I recorded 3 songs – written, produced, scored
and sung by me. My family started to become worried.
I showed my recordings to Sasi who comes for walks
in the park near my house. He heard it and offered
was a huge recognition for me. And then I
received many offers. But since I wanted quality
in my movies, only Kalavani happened. Since
I am now familiar with all aspects of movie
making I wanted to take myself to the next
level. I thought my humor sense would come
in handy in my movie making. My movie is a
result of my thought process. I produced this
movie myself. I have directed this movie according
to the current trends, and what I thought
would work with audience.
Poo was a huge recognition for
You will know it when you watch the movie. After watching
the first copy, Sasi told me that the movie looks
mature and does not look like someone who is debuting.
And my other friends also drew comparison with Sasi’s
works and told me the movie has come out well. I am
hoping that all this will work in my favor.
for Theneer Vidudi
I did not have anybody in mind when I started off
with the movie. Since I am not an established director,
I wanted an actor who is ready to do what I wanted
him to. So I selected actors who will work out for
the movie and it has come out well.
Why did you choose
to produce the movie?
I will have to make compromises if anybody else is
producing the movie. So I realized if I needed the
freedom, I need to produce the movie and I did. Another
thing is that I did not want another producer to bear
the brunt of my experiments. Thankfully, the movie’s
business is good and I think it will make money when
Where did you
shoot this movie?
Theneer Vidudi will be different
Theneer Vidudi and its characters…
would have seen a lot of village based movies.
This movie will be different from them because
I deal with the Pandal contractors in the
movie; they have never been touched upon by
any directors. Hero of the movie is a Pandal
contractor and he has aspirations to build
his business in a big way. Heroine’s
father is a Registrar in the land registration
office who is not corrupt and doesn’t
accept bribes. He hates alcohol and people
who drink. His daughter falls in love with
this drunkard, Pandal contractor. How does
he accept his daughter’s love is the
movie’s crux. It’s a very simple
story line and I have done it in my best way,
making it entertaining and avoiding crude
and double meaning dialogues. It will be a
family movie. This will be a neat love story
without any violence. I am sure that people
who do not like movies also will fall in love
with this movie.
This was shot entirely in Theni district, Bodinayakkanur
and Kambam and finished in 58 days without any patchwork.
We found the location fit for the story.
Any other important characters in the movie?
interesting character in the movie is Nachiyappan,
who plays the heroine’s father. He is
there throughout the movie, on par with the
hero’s scenes. I had difficulties in
finalizing the actor for the movie because
I wanted the actor to be unique and new, totally
unseen before. One day I received a call from
Sasi who said he is sending him somebody called
Prabhakar. He wanted to meet me since he wanted
my music for his movie. However, I asked him
whether he would be able to do this role and
while he initially hesitated, he agreed in
the end. Viewers would love that character.
And the lead pair is also noteworthy. Heroine’s
brother’s role is enacted by a debut
actor called Kodumudi Suresh and he has done
a brilliant job. I have decided that he will
be the hero of my next film. All the characters
will impress you and you will be energized
like drinking a cup of tea.
You will be energized like
drinking a cup of tea after seeing
The tea shop plays a prominent role in this movie.
The way the lead pair expresses their love will be
very close to real life and Sasi also appreciated
that. Besides I have also sung for the movie. A new
singer is also introduced in the movie. There are
only two songs in the movie because I thought only
that was necessary. So the movie is fresh, story is
fresh and I hope you will like it.
About the cinematography for Theneer Vidudi
Many of my institute friends have worked for the movie.
Cameraman Azhagiya Manavalan who studied with me in
the film institute, editor Mahendran who is also my
classmate, Art is by Sri. It’s been 20 years
but we are still in touch and hence this reunion happened.
The movie will also share the same kind of chemistry.
I did everything else other than
are a cinematography student. But why did
you not do cinematography for the movie?
I have studied photography I have never applied
it in real life. Besides, at the institute
I was the institute Chairman so I did everything
else other than studies. My three years at
the institute were very liberating for me
since I was raised in a village and the total
city experience was new to me. So I have to
admit that I did not do well in studies. So
I am only learning the technicalities of camera
About your next project?
We are starting our next project on the 25th of July.
The movie is titled ‘Kerala Natilam Pengaludane’,
adapted from a Bharathiar poem. The movie is about
a young man’s aspirations to marry a Malayali
girl. Again, this is a humorous story. We are planning
to finish this in one schedule and release in October
end. The reception Theneer Vidudi gets will be crucial
for the next movie.
Theneer Vidudi in your new project?
Only Suresh from Theneer Vidudi is retained. Everybody
else is a newcomer. There are seven heroines, all
debut artists. I assure that Theneer Vidudi will be
a fun ride. I hope you all support my movie like you
supported my music.