'Something like Dakini hasn't been attempted in Malayalam cinema'
...says Chemban Vinod Jose, who stars in Rahul Riji Nair's Dakini, where he plays a stylish don taking on a set of sexagenerians
From his debut eight years ago in Lijo Jose Pellisserry's Nayakan to the recent Maradona, Chemban Vinod Jose has firmly established himself as one of the most versatile and reliable actors in Malayalam cinema, playing both comic and serious characters with remarkable ease. Recently, the actor demonstrated his most moving performance in Lijo Jose's Ee Maa Yau.
In his latest film Dakini, directed by State award-winner Rahul Riji Nair, Chemban Vinod Jose plays the role of a stylish don. The film comes out on Thursday.
You play the main villain in Dakini. Is it a fully serious character?
Well, he is a serious guy but the audience might laugh when they see some of his antics. That's how we've approached the character. And as he is a stylish guy, we have chosen a particular dress code for him.
What can you tell us about the film?
It has a slightly fantastical narrative. It has no conventional heroes — the main characters are four old ladies. It's about the conflict between them and my character. Obviously, they can't use their muscle to deal with him, so they use their brains. This naturally provides enough opportunities for a lot of fun moments.
Given that there are no big superstars in Dakini, what according to you is the film's USP?
The novelty factor. I agreed to do it because it looked fresh and unconventional. Something like this hasn't been attempted in Malayalam cinema before.
You've appeared in several bad guy roles before, and each one is different from the other.
I don't make a conscious decision to do something different. Fortunately, the scripts that come to me present me characters with distinct traits, so there is no chance of repeating myself. I usually follow the scripts, but sometimes we make slight improvisations on set. It all depends on what the director tells me.
Are you in Lijo Jose Pellissery's Jallikattu?
Yes. But I can't reveal much about it now.
Angamaly Diaries is set to be remade in Hindi. Are you involved?
I'm in no way involved with that. I have enough things to do here as it is. I believe one of Lijo's friends will be directing it. No names have been finalised yet.
Can we expect another Angamaly chapter from you soon?
No, actually I'm working on another script that is not set in Angamaly. As I've already done a story based there, I felt like moving on to a different story with a different premise set in a different location. I don't know when I'll be finishing it.
Do you plan to do that with Lijo or someone else?
It's too early to say. The writing is only in the initial stages. As it belongs to a different genre, no final decisions have been made on the director. I'll be discussing it with several of them. Let's see.
Can you tell us about the genre?
Again, it's too early to say, because sometimes the story can go in different directions, and you can only decide on the genre once you're done with the story. But I can tell you that it will be a realistic story.
You're playing the lead in Aanaye Pokkiya Paapan. Is filming over?
The first schedule is done. We have a few more portions remaining which are scheduled for December. They're planning to get the film out by next year. It's a light-hearted film with ample doses of humour.