While Vijay’s ‘Mersal’ might be the talk of the town right now, there is another movie that is silently creating waves. The dark horse of the season, ace director Karthik Subbaraj’s first feature production ‘Meyaadha Maan’ has received glorious feedback from critics and audience, resulting in a steady growth in number of screens across the state. Helmed by Rathna Kumar, ‘Meyaadha Maan’ has actor Vaibhav in the lead. As the stage singer ‘Idhayam Murali’, Vaibhav’s on-point North Madras accent and organic performance has earned him a lot of laurels. The slang came to him naturally, says Vaibhav as he talks to indianexpress.com. “I was born and raised completely in Madras, so the slang is not new to me.” However he also confesses that he prepared to play the role of a stage singer. “I watched a lot of stage performers before shooting for those scenes. I got an idea of their body language by seeing videos of their performances,” he reveals.
One of the most appreciated things in ‘Meyaadha Maan’ was the camaraderie shared by Vaibhav and Vivek Prasanna, who has also delivered a great performance. “I really liked Vivek’s character. There is a friend like that in every group. They are best friends, you cannot just let that person go even if there is a problem or misunderstanding. The fact that I had a person delivering a strong performance on the other side helped me elevate my character,” says an affable Vaibhav.
Another highlight of Meyaadha Maan was the brother-sister relationship between Idhayam Murali and Sudarvizhi (essayed by Indhuja). The “Thangachi song” had made news even before the movie released, thanks to its catchy tune and quirky lyrics. Indhuja’s energy is infectious, says Vaibhav. “The brother-sister bond was new to me as well: the sentiment, song and the dynamics of their relationship. Acting is all about reactions. Indhuja has given a superb performance. The more Sudarvizhi raises her voice, the angrier my character would get,” he adds.
Meyaadha Maan was initially scheduled to release in November, but the release was pre-poned to Diwali, clashing with Mersal. Was he nervous? “Kojam illa, bayangara bayam (I was very scared),” admits Vaibhav. “But the positive thing is that not everyone would be able to get tickets for Mersal in the first few days. So we hoped the excess crowd would come to see Meyaadha Maan,” reasons the actor.
Vaibhav had also received a wave of abuse on Twitter for releasing ‘Meyaadha Maan’ along with ‘Mersal’. But he shrugs it off with an “Onnum seyya mudiyathu” (can’t do anything). “Our reasons were very practical. It is a five day holiday. So we wanted to use Mersal’s overflow. We are releasing in fewer screens comparatively and hope word of mouth would help us gain more foothold from Monday,” says Vaibhav.
While it is a coincidence that ‘Meyaadha Maan’ has released along Vijay’s ‘Mersal’, the film is replete with Thala, Thalapathy references. While Thalapathy’s dancing skills are referred to in the Thangachi song, Ajith’s “Aaluma Doluma” makes a special appearance in the movie. “The director is a huge Thalapathy fan. I am a huge Ajith fan, but I also like Thalapathy Anna a lot. It wasn’t intentional,” says Vaibhav who was a part of Ajith’s Mankatha.
Interestingly the actor is not part of Venkat Prabhu’s next ‘Party’. The duo has worked multiple times together in the past and is one of Venkat Prabhu’s pasanga (boys), a fond moniker in the industry circles. “Venkat Prabhu is also producing a movie with Badri Kasthuri called RK Nagar that has me as the solo lead. The shooting for both projects run concurrently. So I wasn’t able to be a part of Party,” he explains. He further adds, “Also, I was offered a villain character in Party. Since I had done a negative role in Chennai 28- 2, I didn’t want to do another one immediately.”