A good story, not budget, decides a film’s fate: Actor Madhavan

By Dibyojyoti Baksi, IANS
Tuesday, February 22, 2011

MUMBAI - It’s only the story and the script that decides the fate of a movie at the ticket window, feels actor R. Madhavan, adding that the spate of small budget films that did well did so because of a good story line.

“I think it’s just a coincidence that all the films that did well were small budget films. But no one is saying that all those films were also great stories or they were also great cinemas. If the big films had good stories, they would have worked as much as the small films have,” Madhavan told IANS in an interview.

He feels some stories don’t need big budget.

“‘Udaan’ is meant only to be made at Rs.3 crore budget. You cannot make ‘Udaan’ for Rs.30 crore and expect to recover Rs.35 crore even if Shah Rukh Khan did it. It’s meant, made, positioned correctly, so it made money. If you have a great story any film will work.”

“You cannot say come and watch ‘Tees Maar Khan’ because ‘tees maar’ people are doing it. Even though Akshay (Kumar) tried his very best, where is the story? Where is the script and story that justifies the intelligence of audience? Why would people watch ‘3 Idiots’ over and over again and not watch a ‘Tees Maar Khan’?” asked the actor.

After “3 Idiots”, the actor will be seen in director Anand Rai’s third directorial venture “Tanu Weds Manu”, a romantic comedy where he falls in love with a girl, played by Kangana Ranaut, who is completely opposite him. The film is releasing Friday.

This is not the first time the actor is working with a relatively new director, but says he won’t entertain a fresher until they offer him a bound script.

“I have got very successful films with newcomers. Be it ‘Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein’ (Gautham Menon) or be it ‘13 B’ (Vikran Kumar) - all are with first time directors or second time directors.

“I think new directors come with new perceptions, energy and passion to win. They don’t have to worry about already existing image or already existing budget that they have to recover. They are fearless and so that’s working, working big time,” Madhavan said.

But at the same time the actor says some newcomers are overconfident and one should be wary of them.

“These newcomer directors are also dangerous because they think just because they are new blood and passionate about it, they know everything. As an actor, I would never agree if a newcomer doesn’t give me a final word on the script. If it is well written, then you need not speak to me, I will speak for you,” said Madhavan.

Just like Shah Rukh Khan, Madhavan too started his showbiz journey with television serials. He featured in Zee TV’s soap “Banegi Apni Baat”in 1996 and after doing couple of more shows moved to the big screen and established himself as a romantic hero in southern movies with hits like “Alaipayuthey”, “Minnale” and “Dumm Dumm Dumm”.

He also featured in Hindi movies like “Rang De Basanti”, “Guru” and “Mumbai Meri Jaan”

But Madhavan would like to stay away from reality shows, which are a rage right now.

“I would never do a reality show. I can’t get into a fight with someone in front of the camera for the sake of it,” said the actor who hosted the game show “Deal Ya No Deal”.

“Television is most lucrative medium that is all. It might help somebody in his or her career. What they are doing might be a hit, but I don’t think the impact from a programme is long lasting,” added the 40-year-old.

“It’s not larger than life and it’s one that you get to see once and have to forget about it. If you do a film, you can see the DVD. No one plays ‘Kaun Banega Crorepati’ when the show is not happening, so if you missed out a moment, you missed out, get over with it. You should do television if the money is great, dignifies your position and personality,” said Madhavan.

(Dibyojyoti Baksi can be contacted at dibyojyoti.b@ians.in)

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