Theeran Adhigaram Ondru: Director Vinoth talks about his fascination for real-life stories
Theeran Adhigaram Ondru is not the usual cop story where the hero single-handedly bridles all the societal problems, says director Vinoth.
Cop stories in Tamil cinema have majorly featured larger-than-life, moustache-twirling protagonists for a long time.
Weaving a story based on a realistic tale in the cop space has always been a rare proposition for Kollywood filmmakers. Young director Vinoth, who made a confident and competent debut with the con drama Sathuranga Vettai, has tried to approach the cop genre with a fresh perspective in his second film Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru, which is gearing up for release tomorrow and is based on several real-life incidents.
"Theeran Adhigaram Ondru is not the usual cop story where the hero single-handedly bridles all the societal problems or challenges and wins over a heinous villain. Instead, it portrays the life of an upright cop who uses pragmatic tactics to solve an elusive case which once shocked the people of Tamil Nadu. Theeran will surely be not your regular, formulaic cop film," says Vinoth in this exclusive chat with FirstPost.
When Vinoth started writing the script of Theeran as an action thriller based on a crime story he read in a newspaper, he happened to meet a police officer through his friend Saravanan. "With no significant research, I had some presumptions and conceived the story in a way. Initially, I thought it's going to be a road movie with action elements. But when I met the real police officers who worked on the case later, it was completely different from what I conceived. Intrigued by the facts, and the related events, I did some more research and was terrified by the magnitude of the investigations conducted," recalls Vinoth about the genesis of the film.
The film travels from Chennai to North India, the team had roped in various artists from the north to bring authenticity to the story.
"Many Marathi and Bhojpuri artists have acted in the film. We had shot in the scorching deserts of Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh and did not expect such extreme climatic conditions. When we shot in the dry winds of the desert, our noses started to bleed, but the crew was completely cooperative. The fact that Karthi didn't make any qualms about the weather and worked relentlessly made others in the team act enthusiastically without any fuss," he says.
Since the story is set in 1995, for some major portions the entire team had to encounter challenging circumstances to find such underdeveloped, nondescript locations to shoot. "In our storyboard, we had nearly 150 sites, so practically it's not possible to erect sets for that many locations. So our hunt for places without the minute traces of globalisation took a long time. We have even shot few sequences in the locations where the real incidents happened," says Vinoth.
Asked about Vinoth's fascination for real-life stories, since his debut directorial Sathuranga Vettai was also based on various con accounts reported in newspapers, he responds,"I feel it is easy to establish a connection between the film and the audience when we take up films inspired from real-life tales. Though we have come across certain events in real or read in a newspaper, our perception towards it tends to change when we know the complete narrative. I always wish to tell a story with a happening backdrop. We have always passed the buck on the system, our police and politicians and it's become very convenient for us. When there's a police officer or a politician in our family, how will our perception be? Theeran will definitely change the way we see our cops today."
Although Rakul Preet's previous outing Spyder directed by AR Murugadoss didn't fetch her good response from both critics and the public, Vinoth says she has a sweet role as a traditional Tamizh ponnu in Theeran. "Rakul plays a loving, homely rural girl. She's a very professional artist. Though she's busy in Tollywood, she has a desire to work in Tamil. When we had a small talk on the sets, she told that she now has a good sense of the scripts and considers Theeran as her first Tamil film. Many good scripts are coming her way now, and she's careful about choosing the right ones."
Produced by SR Prabhu's Dream Warrior Pictures, Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru is also releasing in Telugu as Khakhe tomorrow. Ghibran has composed the music for the film, which features Bose Venkat, Abhimanyu Singh, and Rohit Pathak in pivotal roles.
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