Direction Dreams: 'Vairamuthu has a majestic aura'
This weekly column brings to you a promising assistant director, and their aspirations, and this week it is Boopal Raj, assistant to Suseenthiran
Interview with Boopal Raj
Directors worked with: Suseenthiran, Laxman Kumar
Key responsibilities: Coordinating with different departments of filmmaking
Films worked/working on: Masala Padam, Nenjil Thunivirundhal, Angelina, and the upcoming films of Suseenthiran
I always had an interest in creative fields. But due to pressure from the family, initially I was not in a position to pursue it. I took up a regular job and then later quit it to pursue my passion. However, I kept it secret at first, and for an entire year, my family believed that I was still working.
What do you like about Suseenthiran?
He is really good at juggling and balancing between different things. It can be tasks related to different domains of filmmaking or different films. He also manages to maintain a good work-life balance. Even on the busiest days, he still finds time for his family.
What is the one thing that you've learnt from him?
How to avoid unnecessary talk that takes the focus away from work. During story discussions and on the sets, you will never catch him indulging in small talk.
What’s one area of filmmaking that you had a tough time with, but are better at now?
Writing dialogues. I'm better at it now, but I sometimes still feel that the aid of a professional dialogue writer would make things easier for me.
What’s the oddest thing you have seen or done as an AD?
For Masala Padam I had to act as a corpse. During the first few takes, I couldn't stop trembling. This was because I was suddenly asked to act without a shirt and perhaps the fear of camera set in, too. But after a few takes I became comfortable and pulled it off.
There's another interesting thing that happens among the team that assists Suseenthiran. We keep count of the number of times we get told off for our mistakes, and we even declare winners.
Who’s a director you wish you could work with?
Bharathi Raja, Selvaraghavan and Thiagarajan Kumararaja.
Have you ever been star-struck?
I was starstruck when I met Vairamuthu. We had gone to meet him, along with the director, and the man looked so majestic when he walked in, all clad in white. And when he greeted us, the way he spoke left me in awe.
What are your future scripts and projects?
I have written three scripts -- one is a hyperlinked story, the second is a love story and the third is a hard hitting drama.
Who’s the dream cast of your debut film?
Although big stars do come along with immense experience, I want to throw the spotlight on talents who have potential but often don't get a platform to showcase it. The audience can associate better with such lesser known actors. A good example would be Vinod from Naan Mahan Alla.