Suman Ranganath takes the plunge into full-length comedy
The actor has her hopes pinned on her first full-fledged comedy film, Double Engine, which she promises will have audience laughing out loud
In the film circle, Suman Ranganath has come to be known as a versatile actor. Even so, she had given the comedy genre a miss until recently. But that changed the minute she got an offer to be part of Double Engine. "I didn't think twice," says the actor who is currently shooting for the last leg of Dandupalyam 4.
"Comedy as a genre," Suman says, "is rarely attempted today." Even though she has been part of films that have required her to bring elements of humour, Double Engine will be her first attempt at a full-fledged comedy film. "I was thrilled right from the word go. When director Chandra Mohan narrated the story I said yes. Shooting was so much fun," says the actor, who's quite the chatterbox.
In Double Engine Suman plays the role of a widow, who runs a chit fund business along with three boys, Sadhu Kokila Chikkanna, Prabhu, and Ashok. "If I may say so myself, the four of us make an excellent combo," she says with a laugh, adding, "In fact, I told myself, 'Not bad, I can pull off a comic role.' Comedy allows you to be at your natural best. You don't have to look pretty nor be too cautious. You don't have to be scared about your body language either. I've been my confident best in the film."
'Double Engine is total time pass film'
Director Chandra Mohan hardly had to convince Suman to be part of a comedy film, because she knew that she could make people laugh. "I liked Chandra Mohan's first film, Bombay Mittai, so I was doubly happy when he came to me with his second film. I've noticed that certain artistes only play comic characters, and more often and not, they don't play the lead. So, when a lead actor plays a comic role, I think it elevates the film to another level," she says.
She doesn't forget to mention the director's "superb" comedy timing which she believes will make the film click. "The plot has elements of drama, love and emotion, which makes every scene worth it," she says. The film which revolves around the foursome who cheat customers and loot them of their investments. And to escape their wrath, the group lands in the city. Their encounters, couched in humour, Suman promises will make for a "total time pass film."
'I don't laugh that easily'
So what does it take to make Suman laugh? "I don't laugh that easily. Many times, I watch stand-up shows, funny films, but none of them evoke laughter. I like those who are witty with their dialogues. And, they must also have the right expressions and looks to go with it. That really caches my attention," says the fan of actor Mehmood, who she believes was the "funniest person" the big screen has seen.
Closer home and in the current crop of actors, Suman finds Sadhu Kokila to be "superb in comedy". She adds, "Chikkanna is also good. These are the actors I have worked with. In Bollywood, Amitabh Bachchan's comic timing is great. Sridevi, too, was good when it came comical expressions."
Suman admits that she has a hard time when it comes to double entendre dialogues. But then again, she feels that it all depends on how one pulls it off. "There are certain films where double meaning dialogues are required. But the whole concept doesn't appeal to me because it borders on being vulgar. At the end of the day, it is really up to the director and actor to bring forth dialogues in the manner it should be. I believe in doing it with a straight face. Comedy requires a certain level of intelligence to pull off," she says.