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Sunday, January 8, 2012

Interview with comedy actress Kovai Sarala

Any dull story comes to life the moment Kovai Sarala makes an entry. No one else can replicate her style of walking, her facial expressions or the way she takes her dialogue to a high pitch. Doesn't she get tired being so active ? “Yes I do. As long as I am on the sets I am like a goddess, goody-goody and nice. If there is something that upsets me or irritates me, I don't show it there. I wait till I get home and direct it on my family. It's like changing clothes for me,” says the fair, talented comedian who has done over 750 films in a span of 25 years.

She addresses even actors younger than her with ‘garu' as a suffix. She is doing a couple of films with Naresh and Prabhas apart from five films in Tamil. About her carrying Lawrence like a baby on her hips for Kanchana, Sarala says,“I must have lost count of the number of people who expressed this doubt and asked me if it was graphics, but I feel good and amused. Jiiva's brother Ramesh and another eight-year-old kid posed this question while we were on Kaliagnar TV. I told Ramesh, if you have so many doubts why don't you try, and he did. A ten-year-old kid came running and jumped on to my hip. The director wondered if I could do it, so I said, acting ye kadha, randi!”

Sarala says she has high regard for Telugu people; they have excused her so many times when she faltered while speaking Telugu. All the assistant directors and directors have been co-operative with her and that is why she could speak Telugu so fluently. The actor loves doing any kind of role, be it clichéd or something totally in contrast like Kshemanga Velli Labhanga Randi. In Devasthanam she plays a woman who brings her lunch box and water bottle to a sari shop early in the morning and settles down to select saris but pulls out each and every piece but hardly selects one.

A Malayali from Coimbatore, Sarala nurtured a dream of becoming an actor after watching MGR's films. She waited to complete her studies and then got into films with the encouragement of her sister and father. Is she married? “No I am not, I've never thought about it, no time,” she says. “I'm married to films, my life revolves around movies and I want to work here till I die. I do get a break sometimes but soon I am back in action. I believe in healthy competition not jealousy.”

Kovai Sarala says she wears saris only on screen; at home she is dressed in all her favourite and comfortable clothes, salwars, trousers etc. None of her roles smack of vulgarity. The actor says she has fond memories of Sati Leelavati her favourite film and the advice Kamal Hassan had given her and how he helped her during dubbing. She adds that she learns some quality or other from each from every person in films.


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