During a recent chat with a leading website, director Gautham Ramchandran opened up about directing Malayalam superstar Nivin Pauly’s first straight Tamil film and said that it was a blissful experience. He added that he has known him for a long time and was quite keen to introduce him to the Kollywood audience.
“I’ve known Nivin since the release of Neram, and I had even met him with a script which he had liked. Unfortunately, that project didn’t materialize because we couldn’t find the right producer. But we always kept in touch, discussed ideas and we aspired do a film the way we want to do. This is when I saw a Kannada film and recommended it to Nivin. He wasn’t sure about the idea of a remake but nevertheless asked me to get the DVD. After watching the film, he called me one early morning and said he wanted to do the project,” he added.
Gautham also revealed that he decided to make ‘Richie’ in Tamil rather than as a bilingual as he was impressed by the kind of response received by his much-loved ‘Premam’ in Tamil Nadu.
“I remember telling Nivin that he should go and work with a big director because of the pan south Indian popularity Premam earned him. But he was hell-bent on doing this project and it gave me a lot of confidence,” he added.
Praising the actor’s dedication, Gautham said that he has no ego and is a cool person to work with. He also said that he is grateful to him for working with a relatively new director even after attaining stardom with ‘Premam’.
“When we sat and discussed doing this project after Premam, our conversations were so casual and both of us wanted to work with no inhibitions. I told him to work with a bigger director post Premam because that was the right thing to do. Had I directed Premam, I would’ve wanted to work with a bigger star next. I also didn’t want him to work with me for the heck of it and because we had spent so much time together,” he added.
Interestingly, Gautham took nearly nine months to prepare the script of ‘Richie’ and Nivin gave them creative inputs during the scripting stage also. Talking about this, he said that Nivin is a perfectionist and does not let go of a thing till he is fully satisfied with it.
“It was sheer bliss to work with him. He seeks for a lot of perfection and we gelled in that area because even I don’t let go off things so easily. We enjoy each other’s company and that’s why the product is very special for both of us,” added the director.
Speaking further about Nivin’s dedication, Gautham said that he took plenty of time for dubbing his voice and ultimately ended up doing a good job. The director also added that his character will not be speaking in any particular accent in ‘Richie’ as he wants to keep things accent-neutral.
“We’ve followed a neutral accent throughout the film even though it’s set in Thoothukudi. Nivin is not a native speaker of the language and hence his accent is quite thick. We’ve put as much effort to make his accent sound neutral. In fact, the number of days he took to dub is double the number he took to shoot for the project. What you saw in the teaser was just the first draft of dubbing. We spent a lot of time post the release of the teaser and worked on his accent,” added the director.
Well, we wish team ‘Richie’ good luck and hope that the film turns out to be a success. On a related note, this is a busy time for Nivin. Besides ‘Richie’, he also has ‘Hey Jude’ in his kitty. The film is touted to be a romantic drama and also has Trisha in the lead. The lovely lady will be making her Mollywood debut with this one.
Sometime ago, Nivin had said that he has tremendous respect for her and consider her to be a senior.
“It’s been a great experience. She’s friendly, down-to-earth and comfortable to work with. In terms of acting experience, Trisha’s the senior. She made her debut in 2002 and I came into films almost a decade later. I have watched a lot of her films and have been a big fan since Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa,” he had added.
So, will you be watching ‘Richie’ over the weekend? Comments, please!