The eight-part series will premiere on an upcoming Kannada platform called Katte.
Danseuse-actress Lakshmi Gopalaswamy’s attempt to make the lockdown fruitful with an academic pursuit didn’t really pan out the way she’d hoped. Lakshmi had tried to use the time at home to set her PhD plans in motion; yet despite the best mentor and all other support systems, she soon enough realized that it was not her calling and could not complete it. “I am too free-spirited and, hence, not cut out to sit down and do the actual writing of a thesis. Being a PhD scholar is like having another career altogether and you can’t do that and pursue your other interests at the same time. Yes, I learnt a lot, but the process was not for me,” she says candidly, adding, “I will, however, look at putting my learnings into something, perhaps a performance based on my interpretation of the dance element I was exploring.”
Since then, Lakshmi refocused her energy on doing films again, and the projects she has chosen are quite interesting. “I did a very interesting upcoming Kannada show for the new OTT platform Katte, which is based on Goruru Ramaswamy Iyengar’s iconic novel called Namma Oorina Rasikaru. I play an important role, an Iyengari woman, in this cute tale, which is relevant to today’s times also and has been made as an eight-episode series. This will be a treat for Kannada literature buffs. If all goes well, the makers may look at editing it into a two-hour odd feature film,” she says.
In Malayalam, Lakshmi was a part of Rosshan Andrrews’ Salute, which has Dulquer Salmaan in the lead. “I also did a small but pivotal role in Kalidas Jayaram’s film Rajini. What’s interesting about both my Malayalam films is that I have worked with Dulquer’s father Mammootty and Kalidas’ dad Jayaram too earlier,” she quips.
Right now, Lakshmi says that she is shooting for an interesting Telugu film that is based on a true case with reference to the Indian Penal Code Section 100 - When the right of private defence of the body extends to causing death. “Also on the cards now is a Tamil anthology project for OTT, directed by Priya Venkateshan, each episode of which is based on a short story. This is a fun and lighthearted subject and I should be done with my portions in a few days. The makers are looking at releasing it by the end of the year,” she adds.
The films and her roles in them have been creatively satisfying, says Lakshmi, adding, “I am in a good space right now, where I am enjoying my work and I am looking forward to doing roles that will not be the conventional heroine I played earlier, but those that lean more on content and performance. I could still be the protagonist in an unconventional film and that’s what the OTT space is all about. See how the Malayalam film industry adapted to the pandemic. What helps is that the audience there has always encouraged realistic cinema. Even formulaic cinema is done with aesthetics and class; they won’t put out something that is ridiculous. If I am being completely honest, my status as an artiste has also been elevated on account of having done so much work in Mollywood.”