The Malayalam actress reportedly plays the role of Poonguzhali in the magnum opus that also has Aishwarya Rai-Bachchan, Vikram and Karthi
For any South actor, working in a Mani Ratnam film is a huge deal. This assumes greater significance when it’s in the master director’s magnum opus Ponniyin Selvan. Malayalam actress Aishwarya Lekshmi, who will be seen in a major part in the two-part film based on Kalki’s epic novel, tells OTTplay about her experience of shooting the movie.
“It was amazing and it’s definitely a dream come true for me. Most often, you don’t get what you wish for, but in my case, I got exactly what I wanted. It’s a big deal for me to be in the film, irrespective of how big or small the role is. Thankfully, I got a big role,” she tells us.
The film, which also has Vikram, Aishwarya Rai-Bachchan, Jayam Ravi, Jayaram, Lal, Karthi, Babu Antony and Trisha, will be released in two parts with the first one scheduled for a theatrical release in 2022.
“We have completed shooting for both. We began shooting in December 2019 in Thailand and wrapped up the shoot in Pollachi. It was a beautiful experience. I was shooting for another movie and so couldn’t be there on the final day,” says the actress, who had two OTT releases this year – Jagame Thanthiram on Netflix and Kaanekkaane on Sony LIV.
Ask her about her biggest takeaway from working with Mani Ratnam in the film and Aishwarya says, “For me, it’s that however big you have become, whatever films you have worked in, you have to be disciplined. There’s nothing else you have to do than follow the director. That’s what I learnt working with Mani sir.”
In an earlier interview with us, the actress also talked about the series of coincidences that led to her getting her current part in the movie. The actress was shooting for Prithviraj Sukumaran-starrer Brothers Day when she got the call for an audition for Ponniyin Selvan.
“I had a slight hint about the character that I was called for and it turned out that Mani sir had actually called me for that role and he wanted me to do a look test. After the audition, he told me about the role, but somehow in my head I knew it wasn’t the character that I would be playing,” she said. “So, when my manager called to tell me that the character had been changed, I was the one who actually told him the reason. In my mind, I always felt I suited that character better and that thought manifested itself.”