In conversation with actor Revathy on Aye Zindagi where she plays the role of a grief counsellor, her journey in the entertainment industry and how OTT has a role for all age groups.
One hardly gets to see a film written on a grief counsellor and that was what attracted Revathy to take up the role in Aye Zindagi. In an EXCLUSIVE interview with Firstpost, Revathy says how she still loves the magic of the big screen. She feels that OTT is a blessing for actors and filmmakers, but at the same time the competition is cut throat.
Excerpts from the interview:
Preparation for the role…
It’s 39 years of my career, so I don’t do much preparation. My preparation is listening to the director several times. I read the script and after that I meet the director two three times before the shoot and just listen to what he has to say about the character until it is something or a character I have never seen in my life.
The character’s name is also Revathy and it is actually a real life character whose video I saw few times and I realised that she is a very simple upper middle class woman, soft spoken and gentle and I just tried to follow her mannerism.
Your journey in the entertainment industry…
Things have totally changed starting from writings, formats and stories everything has changed including the cameras and equipment. And even the attitude. The good thing for me is that I think I am very lucky that I came in the eighties. If I would have come now, I don’t think I would have survived as an actor because the competition is tough.
Your views on OTT…
I believe the beauty of watching your film on a big screen is a different kind of fun. I am talking about feature films. But being a fifty plus woman, the scope that OTT offers is huge and thank god for that!
How do you choose your roles?
I read the script and if the script moves me and I connect with the role, I do it. If I can’t connect with it, I don’t do it.
What do you have to say about the revolution brought in by OTT with no heroes, heroines and boxing of characters?
I think the digital platform has changed the format of writing in the script writing and the characters that are now coming alive on screen, they are very real. It is the way a story should be told very realistically without a hero or heroine. The hero heroine concept, I would say, is slowly merging into characters. For an actor the work is the same be it whatever platform. You don’t cry differently for a feature film or an OTT character. Just that the stories are interesting close to reality.
Is Bollywood losing its swag to South films?
I think it is just a phase. We just need to realise that when there is so much content and so easily available like the click of a button, if you want your audience to come to theatres, it has to be very grand or a story that really touches your heart. Otherwise they are not going to come to theatres. Aye Zindagi is one that everybody will be able to connect to.
On playing the role of a grief counsellor…
In Aye Zindagi I play a grief counsellor. A grief counsellor is basically trying to counsel a family who has basically lost his/her loved one. She has to go and speak to them about organ donation and she also counsels people who are waiting in que for organs. I found this to be a very tough job to be a grief counsellor in a hospital. She has a really tough jobs because she will be helping patients whose health is deteriorating and waiting in ques for organs to be given to them and she has to go a speak to a family member who have just lost their loved ones.
On mental health issues…
Mental health is a concern for everybody. I have been connected to an organization call ‘The Banyan’ for the last 25 years and we have done a lot of work around mental health and they are spread all over India and in Sri Lanka. And these days because of the pressure and since you are constantly competing with somebody or the other, you are under tremendous stress to live up to the expectations of your employers. Another thing which is affecting the mental health of both old and young is loneliness.
What are the future projects that you are working on?
I have just finished directing a film which is releasing in December. It is called Salam Venki. Another interesting film that I am doing is called the Storyteller.