Discovered my commercial side with ‘Yennai…’: Gautham Menon

Filmmaker Gautham Vasudev Menon, who is basking in the success of his latest Tamil release “Yennai Arindhaal”, says he realised he can also make commercial films through his experience of working in the film.

“The initial response to ‘Yennai Arindhaal’ was that it didn’t have all the quintessential commercial elements, though I consider it as my most commercial venture. I discovered a commercial side to me and realised that I can venture into these areas as well,” Gautham, who is known for films such as “Kaakha Kaakha” and “Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa”, told IANS.

It’s been a little over two weeks since the film starring Ajith Kumar has released and Gautham is “delighted with the response”.

“When I was making the film, we didn’t think about the response. Ajith was very helpful right till the end and if at all there was pressure, he took it off me. He’d encourage me to do the kind of cinema I’m known for and not let me indulge even slightly to satisfy his screen image,” he said.

“I didn’t treat Ajith like a superstar and that’s what he wanted. I treated him like an actor,” he added.

Gautham takes the mixed feedback positively.

“The industry doesn’t usually say nice things about my work. My films take a while till they are accepted as good and I think ‘Yennai Arindhaal’ too will go through that phase,” he said.

When asked why he thinks the industry doesn’t warm up to his films, Gautham said: “Here, the appreciation comes rarely and trying to put down someone’s film is what always happens.”

But he doesn’t conform to these ideas and wishes good for all films.

“For instance, Anegan released on Feb 13 and our film released a week earlier, which meant that we could get most of the theatres only till 13th. Now, I never wished or conformed to the idea that Anegan shouldn’t do well because Dhanush is someone I like,” he added.

“The problem here is the mass image of Ajith, if at all you consider it one. The film would’ve done really well with somebody without an image but it’s just a hypothetical situation because I knew Ajith was going to be my hero and I always try to keep the image of an actor out of my screenplay,” he said.

But stars control the box-office and Gautham nods in agreement.

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