Thanimai, a mother's lone battle
Sivaraman, the advocate-turned-director, talks about his film, starring Sonia Agarwal
The success of blockbusters like Avengers: Endgame and Kanchana 3 meant that smaller films like last Friday's release, the Sonia Agarwal-starrer Thanimai, only got very few shows. However, producer-director S Sivaraman says he was determined to release it as scheduled on May 3, despite just two theatres opening their doors and that too only for noon shows.
Thanimai is his fifth film, and the director says the inspiration for it stemmed from an incident to which he was a mute witness. Touching on the sensitive Sri Lankan refugees issue, the script solely focuses on one individual -- a much pregnant woman fighting for her survival amidst the chaos all around. "She is moved out of India to Malaysia when her health deteriorates, and the fact of her son being alive is suppressed from her. After nine years, when she gets to know that her son is still alive, she yearns to see him and tries to return to Rameshwaram," says Sivaraman. The film has been shot at live locations, including some in Singapore and Malaysia.
About choosing Sonia Agarwal for the lead, the director adds, "In my view, she is a very underrated actor. She has performed brilliantly, getting into the skin of the character, and aptly bringing out the longings and sufferings of a mother."
Sivaraman adds that the issue discussed in his film has been playing in his mind for a long time. "I dedicate this film to my mother."