Being Surya : The Hindu Article.

The trailer of his Anjaan, directed by commercial film whiz N. Lingusamy, has created a buzz, and Surya oozes style in the stills. He’s also started work on Venkat Prabhu’s Masss.

Years after he became Surya, the actor still drifts back to being Saravanan sometimes. Every May, he takes a month-long break and heads to the U.S. for a family holiday. That’s when he refocusses on his priorities and lives a ‘regular’ life. Those moments are necessary to help me recharge, says the actor, who is in a great space right now.
The trailer of his Anjaan, directed by commercial film whiz N. Lingusamy, has created a buzz, and Surya oozes style in the stills. He’s also started work on Venkat Prabhu’s Masss. The time seems perfect to get the usually reluctant actor to open up about his life and career. He’s nursing a bad cold but is game all the same to answer questions.
“Looking back, I had no clue what my forte was. I just chose from what came to me, based on blind faith. I barely knew anyone from the industry other than appa. Soon, I realised I was getting slotted as a chocolate hero. I hated that. I wanted success on my own terms, not as Sivakumar’s son. I craved variety,” he recalls. Friends and Nandha gave him that opportunity.
Today, his ‘characters’ are spoken about. People remember Doraisingam in Singam, Bodhidharma in 7aam Arivu… Likewise, in Anjaan, it will be Raju Bhai and Krishna, he says. “The characters must be intense and larger-than-life, not Surya.”
That’s an irony considering Surya is very soft-spoken, barring occasions when “I have been pushed”.

Surya gravitates towards roles that will strike a chord with viewers. One of them is Deva of Ayan. “It was a well-etched character; he was playful, naughty and smart. There was a lot of detailing. Recently, I met someone in the Malaysian Customs department who had seen the film, and then cracked about 68 narcotics cases,” smiles Surya. “It proves that films can influence real life.” That’s why he does not accept any character that requires him to go against his moral fibre. “Films are a powerful medium, and fans swear by what actors say or do. I can’t wash my hands off that responsibility.”
Surya likes to sit through a film’s detailing —“That way, the team bonds well, irrespective of whether a film does well or not.” Surya rates comfort level as one of the deciding factors before he signs up. “I spend a substantial portion of my life on the sets. It must be worth it. I need a team that pushes me to do well.”
Generous with praise, Surya says he loved Anjali Menon’s Bangalore Days and wished such a film was possible in Tamil. “I hope that with my own production house (2D Entertainment) I can push the envelope.” Director Pandiraj of Pasanga is directing the banner’s yet-untitled first film dealing with children. “I loved how Taare Zamin Par opened our eyes. Hopefully, our film too will. We are still locking the script.” Will he act in the film? “Let’s see. The adult portions are being worked out.”
For now, Surya says he’s happy doing films that make the actor in him feel good. “I will continue to do big films, films that make me slog. But most importantly, I will choose films that will be remembered long after their release.”
Life with Jo

I did not take Jo on a holiday for years because we felt we could not travel with such young kids. I’ve set that right over the past three years. Luckily, I’m in a position where I can take a break. Morning is when Jo gets some ‘me’ time. I chip in then. Later, she gets busy with the kids. Occasionally, I spend quality time with the kids. Diya is my responsibility, Dev is Jo’s. I put Diya to bed, live a normal life whenever possible. I doodle with Dev. He’s fond of art. I like making outlines for him to fill withcolour. I swim with him. These moments make life so worth it.”
About Anjaan

It’s turned out to be a very stylish film. But that’s expected, considering Lingusamy has a natural sense of style. He’s so good with nuances. Cinematographer Santosh Sivan is an expert in capturing everyday moments. It’s a breezy film, with some intense moments. It’s a story of friends, of brothers. It’s a love story. It’s an entertainer. Lingusamy believes in making pleasant films, where people leave the theatre smiling. He connects well with the audience. That’s so important, because he’s the one who gives final shape to a film.
More on Masss

It’s a very young team and I’m looking forward to shooting. It’s the first time anyone has ever called me Anna on the sets. It’s fun reconnecting with the St. Bede’s gang. Venkat Prabhu is a livewire and I needed this break. I am a fairly serious person in real life but he makes me comes across as light-hearted. I’m out of my comfort zone with this film.


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