Interview
Kathir tells TNM that he came on board the project before Pa Ranjith and Santhosh Narayanan became a part of the film.
Facebook/Kathir L

Kathir, who made his acting debut in Madha Yaanai Koottam (2013) is happy that his hard work finally paid off with Pariyerum Perumal’s humongous reception at the box-office. The actor’s every step is measured.

“I did Kirumi (2015), followed by Ennodu Vilaiyadu and Vikram Vedha in 2017. I didn’t sign many films in between. In the process, I figured out what I want to do. I only wish to make each film of mine an eventful one,” he says.

Pariyerum Perumal wasn’t written for Kathir. After listening to the story, he went out of his way to bag the film.

“Around 2016, my friends and I were discussing something at midnight, and one of them told me Mari Selvaraj had a fantastic script. I didn’t know the story. The next day, I called him and expressed my interest in doing the film. Glad it materialised. I remember reading the bound script seven times before the shooting started. For sure, I knew the audience would celebrate the film. It just felt like the right move,” he recalls.

However, Kathir adds little did he know Pa Ranjith would come on board as a producer.

“Nothing was decided when I zeroed in on Pariyerum Perumal. I believed in the film. Once Ranjith anna and Santhosh Narayanan became a part of the film, the project garnered a lot of attention,” he smiles.

But what made him feel extremely confident about the film?

“First, Pariyerum Perumal is based on a collection of true stories. Two, when Mari Selvaraj spoke in length about my character, I felt it was portrayed with utmost honesty. Besides, the story itself was soulful. I liked the way Mari put forth the representation of love in the film. It was beautiful -- that thin line of confusion between romance and friendship!”

Though the film was completed in 47 days, Kathir says the team had managed to get 60 days’ footage in that limited frame of time. “As a team, we put in so much hard work. As for emotional scenes, I didn’t need any glycerine to cry, and wanted to keep it real. Also, mostly everything was taken in a single shot -- including the scenes between Karuppi (the dog) and I.”

According to Kathir, Karuppi is the best part of the film. “She was an intelligent dog, and also understanding. We developed a special bond on the sets. Being a dog-lover, I could totally empathise with her.”

Now that Pariyerum Perumal is declared a hit, what’s his current state of mind?

“My happiness knows no bound, and I’d like to thank Vijay Sethupathi anna for his constant motivation and support. He’s made my bad days better. He often says, ‘Just do your work, don't expect results. That will come on its own’. And, today I realised that’s the truth. We’ll also send the film to festivals across the world.”

As we talk, Kathir gets emotional and says he doubts if he could get another intense film like Pariyerum Perumal in future. “Undoubtedly, Pariyan is a role of a lifetime. I’ve always wanted to strike a balance between box office success and content-driven cinema. I’ll continue doing the same."

Up next, Kathir has Sigai, a crime thriller and Chathru, a cop story in the pipeline. He has high hopes about Sigai that revolves around the story of sex workers in and around Chennai.

"The film is directed by Jagadeesan Subu, an associate of Kaaka Muttai-fame Manikandan. It's completely a different attempt that breaks all preconceived notions about a thriller. There are nine characters in the film, and each one of them is important to the story," he signs off.