Pulli actor Dev Mohan talks about the impact that Shaakuntalam had in his career and how it also opened doors for him in Telugu
For Malayalam actor Dev Mohan, who was just a film-old when he signed Samantha Ruth Prabhu’s Shaakuntalam , the movie was an opportunity that he just couldn’t miss. However, the much-anticipated film tanked at the box office and was also critically-panned.
In a candid chat with OTTplay, Dev, who is gearing up for the release of his Malayalam movie Pulli next, tells us that despite the film’s box office failure, it didn’t make him question his choices of roles.
“In my case, I haven’t done such a film or a genre before; I take all of that into account while signing movies,” he says. “When Shaakuntalam came my way, it was a big opportunity for me; when you are approached for a pan-Indian film, 100% you want to do it.”
The actor also explains that he is aware of what went wrong in the film, which was helmed by Gunasekhar and had him essaying the role of King Dushyant. “What didn’t work in Shaakuntalam was its VFX. As an actor, who is relatively new and from another industry, I have little control over that. I also believe that not everything is in an actor’s control. Maybe after doing a few more films and as I grow in my career, I would be able to strongly state my opinions. But there’s a limitation in terms of how much say someone inexperienced has.”
Dev, who is currently working on his seventh movie Parakramam, says that each film has served a different lesson that has helped hone his craft better too. “There wasn’t much I could do about Shaakuntalam not being commercially successful. Obviously, we were all disappointed because we had put in a lot of effort, time and energy. But that happens in this industry, and we have to understand that and move on,” he says.
Though the film didn’t work at the box office, it did open up new doors for Dev in Telugu – with the actor signing Rainbow, a romantic fantasy-drama with Animal star Rashmika Mandanna.
“After Shaakuntalam, people within the Telugu industry noticed me, primarily as the guy who played Dushyant in the movie. It gave me visibility. Why I also signed Shaakuntalam was that it had a character arc that let me prove my acting potential. It gave me an opening in one of the biggest industries in Indian cinema. I am doing Rainbow now, and as a beginner, I feel I should grab these opportunities and prove myself,” he concludes.