Jithan Ramesh Interview: Regrets, lessons, and evolution
Jithan Ramesh, who will next be seen alongside Aishwarya Rajesh in Farhana, talks about learning from his failures, evolving as an actor, and producing a Vijay film
Farhana revolves around a housewife from a conservative Muslim family who takes up a call centre job and gets inadvertently entangled in a series of troubles. While Aishwarya Rajesh plays the titular character, it is the casting of her husband that is a rather inspired choice. Farhana marks Jithan Ramesh's return to Tamil cinema after a few years. “I play an understanding husband. My character is very subtle with his emotions, but has a lot of depth and nuance.”
Ramesh exudes confidence about Farhana giving him the reach that his debut, Jithan (2005) gave him all those years back. After a rather forgettable adult comedy (Ungala Podanum Sir) in 2019, Ramesh was only seen on television in Bigg Boss Tamil 4 and BB Jodigal season 1. On what prompted him to select Farhana, Ramesh says, “I haven’t done anything for four years because I was not satisfied with the stories that came my way. But when director Nelson Venkatesan narrated Farhana, it felt like a breath of fresh air. It is a well-written, family-oriented story.”
While Jithan did give Ramesh a solid start, he is candid about the slump in his career soon after. “I kept wondering how a lot of these stories that I genuinely liked ended up as failures. I understood that the fault was definitely mine, and my script selection needed serious reworking. After making peace with this weakness, I took some time off to focus and be picky with my projects,” he says.
This candidness is both rare and refreshing, and Ramesh attributes this approach to the confidence he has on Farhana.
“I have given my best in the film. I had the opportunity to showcase my talents as a performer in the film, especially in one of the climactic scenes. In fact, the director and crew were happy with my performance, and I can't wait for the audience to see it," says the actor, who injects another dose of candidness in this interaction as he talks about his transition from lead role to supporting ones. ”This isn’t new to me, I have been doing supporting roles since Osthi(2011) but I always strive to pick roles that have a strong impact. The times have changed now, and most films have an ensemble cast with equal prominence. You can see this predominantly in web series nowadays and I’m happy with this change.”
Apart from making his mark as an actor, Ramesh is also working hard to uphold his family legacy as the co-producer of the prestigious Super Good Films banner. Ramesh is excited about making his banner’s landmark 100th film with their long-time collaborator Vijay. “We made six films with Vijay anna and all of them have been blockbusters. We would very much like to continue that winning streak,” shares Ramesh with palpable enthusiasm. While the project is still in the nascent stages of development, Ramesh assures that he has big plans for the project. “We won’t compromise with this film. Vijay anna’s mass will be retained and it will be a family entertainer as well,” he signs off with excitement.