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    Feb 2010


    Default "Life Is Good" for Ananth Mahadevan

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    Having directed 13 films in a span of ten years, director Ananth Narayan Mahadevan is back to regale the audience with his latest film Life Is Good. We caught up with the ebullient director while he was on his way to his office.

    Having done a film on Naxalite in Red Alert: The War Within, a biopic Mee Sindhutai Sapkal and the recent true life story Staying Alive, was it not hard to delve into an emotional story? “Well, the film is not emotional in the true sense. The film is based on incidents of life that happen to be life changers. Let me tell you one thing: Life is really good, if you make it good. It is all on how you interpret your life,” replied the director. The film is based on human relations, “the kind of which you find a lot in Iranian films,” he added.

    The film revolves around a middle-aged Rameshwar (Jackie Shroff), an accountant at the local post office, in a hill station in North India. He refrains from getting married for the fear lest the woman he marries does not take care of his slightly handicapped mother. “The story gets a push when Rameshwar is plunged into depression after his mother expires,” stated Mahadevan.

    As Rameshwar contemplates to end his life, a six-year old girl Mishti (Sanya Ankleswaria) enters his life and changes his outlook of existence forever. Clinging on to her as a friend and the reason to live, Rameshwar sees Mishti grow up, first as a thirteen year-old teenager (Ananya Vij) and later in her twenties (Ankita Sinha). “All the three have done immensely well; they are all natural actors,” the director added.

    He realizes that he would have to live with the truth that Mishti would migrate with her fiancée to America once she gets married. He is worried what would happen to him in that circumstance.

    But the real test of his grit comes when an unexpected tragedy strikes. “I cannot reveal the climax as here lies the heart of the
    film. All I can say is that the climax is emotional that would bring out tears.”

    But how come he chose Jackie Shroff to essay this kind of a character when he has done mostly action-oriented roles in his career? “Knowing very well that Jackie had not done this kind of role in the past, I also knew that he was a versatile actor. Only that someone had to break his body language, that I undertook to do and was successful at that,” averred Mahadevan.

    “Jackie fitted my role very well. He will give one the impression that his is the character etched out of the neighborhood. He has given a subtle performance. In fact, the moment he heard the script, he connected with his mother whom he loves very much. This part got an impeccable performance out of him.”

    Finally, we asked Mahadevan that he being a Malayalee, didn’t he have problems handling Mee Sindhutai Sapkal…that got a few National awards? “Not at all, though I am from Kerala, I was born and brought up in Bombay. I am equally conversant in English, Hindi and Marathi. Hence conversing with the actors too wasn’t a problem at all. And regarding the direction of the film, all I can say is when a director understands the story well, everything follows naturally.”

    We wish the film a great success!!!



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