Tamil superstar Surya, who made his debut in Bollywood with Rakta Charitra, was not in Mumbai on the eve of the movie release to promote the film. Though the director Ram Gopal Varma was keen to get Surya over to Mumbai for media interaction, the actor cancelled the appointments at the eleventh hour.
When contacted Surya said, "I couldn't attend as I was shooting the climax for AR Murugadoss' film Ezham Arivu (the Seventh Sense). It's a very complicated sequence. And the weather played truant, so we go delayed. I was really keen to be in Mumbai before the release of RC 2. Now I can't move out of Chennai. I wish I was there to support my first Hindi release. But the climax of Murugadoss' film required a Chinese martial artiste. We brought him in."
An intricate martial arts stunt for Murugadoss' film still remains to be shot. Says Surya, "I can't seem to find the time to prepare and shoot it. Now this Chinese artiste from Hong Kong will direct and choreograph this stunt. He says I need to train for at least a month for the stunt. But where's the time?"
Surya sees no difference between a Tamil and a Hindi film. "I hope these artificial differentiations dissolve. Let's not refer to films by their regional identity. Whether it is in Hindi, Tamil or Malyalam it's all part of the Indian cinema. Let me be known as an Indian actor from Tamil Nadu. If we take a Pan-India view of films in every language every aspect of Indian cinema from the economics to the cultural identity would become simpler to handle."
Surya remembers how excited he was when he saw Siyaji Shinde for the first time in Ram Gopal Varma's Shool. "He's from Marathi theatre. I didn't know who he was. But I was awestruck by his work. I sought him out to congratulate him. I don't claim to be a great actor. But I want these artificial barriers to break. I wish Rakta Charitra 2 would work so people won't say, 'Let him go back to his home town."
After much deliberation Surya has dubbed his own Hindi lines in Rakta Charitra. "I got myself a Hindi teacher Mr Subramaniam. He's a gold medallist in Hindi. He spent three months with me teaching me Hindi and refused to charge money. I admit it was a tough challenge to learn Hindi. The Hindi and Tamil alphabets are different. But after dubbing I am confident about my Hindi."
Surya is confident about his performance. "It's all because of Ramu. He has been very patient. He has really gone all-out to support my entry into Hindi cinema. Strangely despite the violence the women want to see it more than the men."
There are plans to dub and release Murugadoss' Ezham Arivu in Hindi, depending on how Surya is received in RC. Says Surya, "They are going to have a television premiere of the first part of Rakta Charitra 2 on the same weekend that the second part is being released. So the interest in the work will be high. That's a huge teaser trailer."
Contrary to reports Surya and Vivek were not at loggerheads during the shooting of Rakta Charitra 2. Says the softspoken Surya, "We met during Yuva for the first time.Spent some time together and hit it off. Though I'm just a month older than him he treats me like an elder brother. I feel awful I couldn't make it for his wedding because I was in Thailand. We only had two days of shooting together in Rakta Charitra 2. But throughout the film both of us obsessed are with getting the better of the other."