Producer RK Suresh, who makes his acting debut in National award-winning film-maker Bala's forthcoming Tamil action-drama Tharai Thappattai, says he has waited really long for this opportunity.
"I've always wanted to be launched by Bala sir. I would've waited longer if it was needed to work with him. Besides the recognition an actor gets while working with him, it's the overall experience of working with this master that really counts," Suresh told IANS.
Suresh plays the antagonist in the film, which will focus on the lives of 'Karakattam' dancers, and is slated to release on January 14th.
Recalling how he landed the acting opportunity, he said: "I had distributed Bala sir's 'Paradesi' in few areas. Before its release, I met him and told him that I'm interested in acting. He said he'll keep it mind."
In 2014, Suresh received the call he'd been waiting for with bated breath and It was from Bala's office.
"I sat in front of him in his office. He kept staring at me for a few minutes and then told me I was required to grow beard. There were no questions asked. It was one year after I started growing my beard, he called and informed that I'll be working in his new project," he recalled.
Suresh didn't even know what role he was playing.
"He just told me it was an important role. I really didn't care to know much about my role. What was important for me was that I was getting launched by Bala sir. I was going to work with him and there's nothing more rewarding than that," he said.
It was only after a few days of shooting that Suresh realised he was playing the baddie.
In the film, which also features actor-filmmaker Sasikumar and Varalaxmi Sarath Kumar in the lead, Suresh plays the kind of villain Tamil cinema hasn't seen so far.
"You wouldn't have seen anybody more villainous than my character. I play someone who's mostly silent, but at the same time extremely violent," said Suresh, who says the film will be incredibly close to reality.
"Bala sir is known for his realistic portrayal. He wanted everything to be realistic, including the fight scenes. He expects his actors to get under the skin of their characters and all of us lived our roles," he said.
While many claim Bala is strict, authoritative and hard to please on the sets, Suresh thinks otherwise.
"One needs to surrender themselves to him. You follow his lead and do as he says; you'll enjoy working with him. I admit he's not someone who usually likes to appreciate his actors, but he knows when exactly to do that," he said.
The film has music by maestro Ilaiyaraaja, and it happens to be his 1000th album.