Ponniyin Selvan Tested All That I Have Learnt In My Career: Karthi

New Delhi: South star Karthi says all the actors working on Mani Ratnam’s multi-starrer ‘Ponniyin Selvan’ put their best foot forward to make a film that will be remembered for years to come.

The movie boasts of a star-studded cast, including Karthi, Vikram, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Jayam Ravi, Trisha, Sobhita Dhulipala and Prakash Raj.

Karthi said the team spent about 130 days shooting for the two-part epic, gave it their all and constantly encouraged one another to do better because a cinematic experience like this is rare.

“All of us have a feeling that we have spent a lot of time on this film. We did it with a lot of love. We know that these kinds of films don’t happen often. So, from the very first day we were cherishing every moment.

“We were like a cricket team, where the opening batsman has to do well, the middle order has to be good, and the bowlers have to be good too. So, we were always looking out for each other because each one had to do their part well for the film to be good. This film is going to be remembered for a very long time,” the 45-year-old actor told PTI in an interview.

Having worked like a close-knit family, Karthi said he developed a great relationship with everyone.

“The camaraderie, the relationship that we share is very very special for us,” he added.

Based on Kalki Krishnamurthy’s 1955 novels, the Tamil historical drama chronicles the story of the early days of Arulmozhivarman, a powerful king of the south who went on to become the great Chola emperor Rajaraja Chola I.

Karthi essays the role of Vanthiyathevan, a brave and adventurous warrior in the film, whose second part will hit the screens on Friday.

The actor, who has been around for close to two decades in the movie industry, said he was under pressure to live up to the expectations of the fans of the “Ponniyin Selvan” books.

“For me, it tested all that I have learnt in my career. This story itself is a hit and the characters are big stars from the book itself. So, we had to make sure you delivered it well. It is not easy to face pressure.

“Like, if there are ten lakh people who have read (the novel), there are ten lakh imaginations. So, converting a novel to a movie is not simple. But to achieve it with the help of Mani sir gives (you) a lot more confidence in your craft,” the actor, known for “Paiyaa”, “Naan Mahaan Alla”, “Siruthai” and “Kaithi”, said.

Karthi said the character of Vanthiyathevan has been popular since his mother’s school days.

“So, imagine the pressure,” he said, adding, “It was one of those charming characters. So naturally, the walk, the smile, and your pauses… all that is so important to get it right.” According to Karthi, “Ponniyin Selvan II” has a lot of “real meat” and “drama”. The first part was released back in September 2022 and did well globally.

“‘PS 1’ exceeded our expectations, so we are all the more confident about ‘PS 2’, in the sense that it has real drama. People have their own favourites in these characters, so I am sure everybody is going to root for what’s going to happen,” he said.

“Thankfully, all the characters have a complete arc, which is very beautiful. This film, though is periodical, there is a lot of romance there and Mani Ratnam romance is something that nobody wants to miss,” he added.

The magnum opus has propelled his fan-following across the country, Karthi said.

“This film has helped me to reach a wider audience. People who have not watched my films, (have seen it) though I have been around for a long time. There are people who have never come to theatres, never watched films, now they know me. Also, there are small children who connect with me. It improves your confidence as you are receiving so much more love,” he said.

“Ponniyin Selvan” is backed by Ratnam’s production house Madras Talkies and Allirajah Subaskaran’s banner Lyca Productions. The film will be released in five languages — Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Kannada and Hindi.

(This report has been published as part of the auto-generated syndicate wire feed. Apart from the headline, no editing has been done in the copy by ABP Live.)