No interest in candy-floss romance: Prithviraj
Prithviraj began his career in 2002 with Nandanam playing a character older than his real age, and soon with consequent movies, it became the norm for the star to play older characters.
His recent movies Ennu Ninte Moideen and Anarkali, though, have given him space to play the younger phases of his characters’ lives as well. His upcoming release with Vedhika too will see him essaying a character and his evolution spanning a decade. “The film is about what happens to two people when they go through life. It’s about them changing without themselves knowing — from young lovers to marital partners to parents. I will be seen in different looks to show how the character evolves,” says Prithviraj, about the Sujith Vaassudev directorial.
So what does he feel about portraying different phases of lives of characters? “The only reason why I might play a 24-year-old lover in a film would be that the character also has a 35-year-old stage in it. Otherwise a younger guy should be roped in for that role because I am already too old to play a college boy.”
That age component is also the deal clincher when it comes to him signing on romantic movies these days. “Frankly, a college, candy-floss romance no longer interests me. I will get bored halfway through the shoot. Over the years, I have gone through so many character graphs that now something superficial wouldn’t interest me,” says the 33-year-old actor. “I guess that is natural as you evolve as an actor.” Interestingly, throughout his career, it has been a Catch 22-like situation for Prithviraj when it came to playing roles his age. “Right from my debut, I was inadvertently slotted into a position where I ended up playing characters older than myself. I think most filmmakers saw a macho guy in me. So I was offered these actions roles early in my career,” says Prithviraj. “I did a film like Stop Violence when I was 19 and Chakram at 21. I remember actors twice my age addressing me as ‘Chandretta’ in the latter. Automatically, when people see an actor repeatedly in such roles your screen age becomes older.”
Ask him if he considers himself a veteran now compared to other young A-list actors in the industry and Prithviraj says, “I guess I do belong to the younger crop of actors in Malayalam but I can’t deny that I have a sizeable chunk of experience behind me.” And has that experience mellowed his reactions, especially compared to the earlier phases in his career when the actor minced no words? “I still react in the same way,” pat comes the reply. “I think everyone has just got used to my reactions. It won’t be shocking if the shock is consistent. When I see the transcripts from my old interviews now, I realise that I haven’t changed at all.”