Actor Dulquer Salman, who worked under Mani Ratnam's direction in “O Kadhal Kanmani”, says for any actor to work with the acclaimed filmmaker is like studying in the world's top university. Dulquer spoke about it on Saavn's entertainment-based audio show ‘Take 2’ with Anupama and Rajeev podcast.
The actor, who is the son of Malayalam superstar Mammootty, has been on Ratnam's sets since he was a child.
How was it to have Mani Ratnam direct your father and to work with the same director as a leading man?
"It was amazing. My dad and Mani Ratnam sir have met several times even after working in “Thalapathi”. They became pretty close during the shoot of “Iruvar”. I used to meet Mani sir in my house and his office was close to my house in Chennai," Dulquer said.
But when Dulquer finally sat to work with the director himself, he was super intimidated by him.
"With Mani sir, you have to have things to talk about or be prepared to remain silent. He doesn't talk much, so there were moments in between the shots when I used to say to myself, 'Say something, anything, come up with something clever', and there was a deafening silence.
I was sure he was running through the scenes in his head. Getting Mani sir's film for an actor is like getting into Harvard... getting cast or getting a call is like some kind of accomplishment. Somewhere your work is being noticed or you have been doing something," added the young actor, who is working across different languages.
In the recent past, he has worked in movies like “Solo”, “Mahanati”, and “Karwaan”.
Does he find a big cultural difference in being on a Hindi film set to a set in the south?
"Honestly speaking, I connect or relate more to a Hindi film set because all my assistant directors and pretty much everyone I work with would have kind of grown up like me.
They would have developed in big cities, they are all fairly well-travelled; we probably read the same books and watched the same movies. But the smaller industry not so much, but they at the most have exposure to maybe Bengaluru or Mumbai... maybe not rest of the world, so it's the little things like that. That's the big difference that I find," he concluded.
Pic Courtsey: dqsalmaan (Dulquer Salmaan)