Rajini in Sivaji

Director Shankar's Interview to SUN TV about Sivaji

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This is the second part of the English translation of the interview given by Shankar (about Sivaji, Rajini and everything else) to SUN TV. Darien Rukshan Rajay had translated this into English and given to behindwoods to publish it.

Read the first part of the interview here.
Read the second part of the interview here.

Host: Which places have you traveled for this movie?

Shankar: We went to Spain, Pune, Hyderabad.

Host: So now that director Shankar, Superstar Rajnikanth and music director A.R. Rahman have combined together for a movie, many people are saying one thing or another about the movie's story, etc., so now we ask you directly what the real secret behind Sivaji is?

Shankar: Actually this is a story about someone who aspires to do something good and the difficulties encountered when trying to do so.you see, whenever someone tries to do something good, no one will come to help that person, but there will always be many people trying to block it, ruin it or to give trouble. Some people even drop the idea of doing something good and go back to their own lives because of the obstacles and barriers they have to face by saying something along the lines of 'do I really need to go through all of these unnecessary problems?'. But the essence of this story is about someone who above all odds, perseveres against all of these adversities and is victorious in his endeavors. If you take a look at the first half of the movie, it will flow with much comedy and lighter situations and the story will also flow along the same track and if you look at the second half, it is just pure unexpected surprises.so the first half will have a different taste and the second will have another. What else can I tell you besides this? (Laughs)

Host: Sir you can even tell us what the first scene is and we will gladly listen.

Shankar: Oh sure I will definitely tell you the story, starting from scene number one.that is, the day after the release of the movie. (Laughs)

Host: Sir, in all of your movies there is always some message within the story; do you think those messages are reaching the people?

Shankar: Definitely.before when I was starting out in the beginning I did not have much faith whether the message I was trying to articulate through my movies reached the audience....you know, they would watch the movie and then forget about it.but after Indian for example, I felt a certain awareness about accepting bribes in the society, after Mudhalvan, just like how the typewriter was utilized in the movie, certain people, such as collectors and government officials for example, do the same thing by giving suspensions and taking immediate action on the spot by bringing a typewriter with them.so after reading these things in newspapers and periodicals, a belief that you can make a difference through the medium of cinema was instilled in me. After Anniyan, I have also seen more people adhering to the traffic rules- such as stopping at the line at a yellow signal, staying behind the yellow line at a stop, not spitting in public, etc., many people have called me and told me so.even when I look at my own road, I can witness better traffic discipline.so whether substantial change occurs or not, I can still feel a certain consciousness about those messages.

Host: Is there a message within Sivaji also?

Shankar: Certainly, we have incorporated a good message in this movie as well.you see, our country's economy is currently flourishing and growing.if you take a look at the currency market, the Indian rupee was valued at 47 rupees to 1 American dollar, but now the rate is 43 to 1...so in this movie, what we are trying to say is that if the wealth our economic engine creates goes to the right places, then we can make many beneficial changes to our country.so it is a very good message we convey in the movie and I'm confident it will work out. (Shooting Clips Shown)

Host: Sir, when you say the name Rajni, there will be some sort of punch dialogue that can go along with it; he has always used them in his movies.are there any punch dialogues in Sivaji?

Shankar: For example, 'Sachin adicha sixer thaanda, Sivaji adicha puncture thaanda, Singam kooda jujubi thaanda, Sivaji vaayil jilebi thaanda', so there will be punch dialogues, but they will be in the songs.it will be a theme type, so there will be punch dialogues in the movie; we just have changed it a bit, it will be different, but when you watch the movie you will see how it fits.

Host: You just were talking about "Sivaji vaayil jilebi thaana' and so it leads to this question, normally Rajni is known for his cigarette smoking and gimmickry on screen, but now because he does not do that, what has he done in this movie?

Shankar: Watch the movie and you will see (Laughs).if I tell you now the thrill will be gone. (Shooting Clips Shown)

Host: Now finally to all of those viewers across the globe, what do you wish to say?

Shankar: Happy Tamil New Year. One request I have for all of you is that you watch Sivaji and other movies in the theaters and not on pirated discs.many people have put their best efforts and talents as well as invest much money in creating these movies and so it would be wrong to waste that.that is the only thing I ask of you. Thank you.