Ennobled as the tallest and herculean kind of actor in Tamil cinema, Shanmuga Pandian has kept everyone’s expectation involving his upcoming film ‘Madura Veeran’. Much more than carrying the acclaimed lineage of Captain Vijayakanth, Shanmuga Pandian has carved a niche with his excellent efforts to create a brand of his unique style.
So what made him choose ‘Madura Veeran’ at the earnest level? Ask him and he replies, “Of course, Jallikattu happens to be the main reason behind taking up Madura Veeran. We have come across many Tamil movies that have touched the concept of ‘Jallikattu’, but to a limited extent. It would be either confined to the first half or a particular sequence, but Madura Veeran is completely about Jallikattu from beginning till end. Yes, there are entertainment elements in the film, but it doesn’t cross this domain anywhere.”
He puts up an additional justification claiming, “Youngsters came to know about the cultural heritage of Jallikattu during last year of protest. This movie will furthermore enlighten them to know more about it.”
Inclined to an urban lifestyle from childhood, it should have been definitely difficult for him to adapt a rural man, isn’t it? But Shanmuga Pandian quashes our assumptions saying, “Although I was born and brought up in city, I have travelled a lot to villages right from my childhood along with my parents and by myself. In an incisive note, there is no big deal of difference between urban and rural areas. Well, you would see lots of farm lands out here in villages and in contrast, more buildings across cities. Adapting to village lifestyle for this film wasn’t a big challenge. I have been familiar with Madurai Tamil dialect as I used to speak to my family from childhood in this slang. But since, I play a guy returning from foreign, my role demanded for a normal Tamil slang.”
Jallikattu having become an unforgettable event in the pages of world history, does Madura Veeran deal with real life incidents or a fictional take? “Madura Veeran has its core concept of Jallikattu and it focuses on its issues in the village. It doesn’t fall into the category of based on true incidents, but it has some moments that happened in village that actually created threatening situation to Jallikattu.”
On working with cinematographer turned filmmaker P.G. Muthaiah, Shanmuga Pandian adds, “Every upcoming actor or even the one in top league would desire to work with highly ranked directors. But these days, we are blatantly witnessing the arrival of new filmmakers, who are creating a renaissance in Tamil industry. End of the day, it’s all about the ‘CONTENT’ that really concerns. P.G. Muthaiah sir has exactly translated the script he narrated to my father into beautiful visual output now.”
Sharing few words about his co-star Meenakshi, he says, “Despites the fact that Madura Veeran happens to be her debut film, she was so much expressive and was fluent with Tamil dialogues.”
Getting to brief about his working experience with Samuthirakani, Shanmugha Pandian tots up saying, “He is more like an uncle to me and has treated me with such bonding right from my childhood. Samuthirakani sir was so much helpful and supportive throughout the shoot. He educated us more on Jallikattu and some of them have been used as dialogues in the film as well.”