Busy director Shankar made time for a special interview with Rajeev Masand on CNN/IBN. The Tamil filmmaker spoke about his forthcoming Tamil movie I, his lead actor Vikram, his penchant for huge-budget movies etc. Here, we bring you the edited excerpts from the interview that we found on Vikram's fan page on Facebook.
On Being Asked About Vikram's Commitment, Shankar Said: Vikram's commitment amazed me. I'm bit doubtful if any other actor would have agreed for the script. Interestingly though, he was the only actor I approached for I.
Citing An Example Of His Dedication, Shankar Revealed: There are so many actors who think a lot before tonsuring their head, but Vikram said that he will do anything for I. He is really great.
Extraordinary VFX: VFX work in a film succeeds when the audience do not realize it is VFX. Except for a few shots such as the bike transforming into Amy Jackson, you cannot realize that it is special effects. We worked with Rising Sun Pictures, who worked in the Harry Potter series. The audience are watching a lot of films on television, so their intelligence levels are obviously high. We have to satisfy the audience who come to the film looking for bigger things every time. Srinivas Mohan is a wonderful VFX artist, it feels great to work with him. Continue reading the story on the slideshow...
Whatever we spend, it should be seen on-screen. I'm a producer too, I have produced many movies and budget should be treated very efficiently. My script demands a bigger budget, and that is why I opt for one. The audience have now started coming to my films expecting to see grandeur.
I don't simply pitch in unnecessarily. In Mudhalvan, there was a song where the hero goes to meet his girl. The whole song was shot with a dhoti, a yellow shirt and simple costumes for the heroine.
I In Chinese Language:
I will be dubbed in the Chinese language. It is actually the producer's idea to release it in China. The people requested us while we were shooting there.
I To Be Dubbed In Hindi:
The right people should be on board and have confidence on the movie. The person who is in charge of the Hindi version should spend 10-15 crores to publicize and then ponder about the returns too. It depends on the people who are getting involved. If it is in the right hands, it will reach another level.
On The Teaser Leak:
I did not go for a teaser change. The teaser, which leaked was not in a good quality. You couldn't make out much from it. However, it's a good work, what we did. We took one month to lock onto that 50-second teaser. I take it this way - If it is leaked, its publicity. If it is not leaked, its secrecy. It is good for me in both ways.
On I Being Different From His Other Films:
We can call this a romantic thriller, a genre I haven't done before. The beast song is an emotional track, it will connect big. AR Rahman has come up with a fabulous song. Things I haven't done before, have been done in I.
Shooting In China:
Shankar said that it is big challenge to shoot in China due to unpredictable weather. We shot in tough conditions for 45 days and stuck to the schedule. I was really keen to shoot in never-seen-before locations, because every movie has five songs these days and you don't want to feed the audience with the same thing over and over again.
Will Shankar Ever Make A Small Film:
I'm ready to make a small film if the audience are ready to see a small film from me. They expect grandeur from Shankar. If I get bored of making big films, I can go out and make a small one. But I am enjoying this.
Where Do The Ideas Come From:
Ideas are in the air for me. All my imaginations demand big cost and big budget. Still, I'm pushing hard to get what I want. I can say I've got at least 50% of what I want, in terms of budget. We have wonderful technicians in our country. We are no less. Budget is the only problem.
I'm waiting for a good day, a day where I can make pan-Indian films.