I was super excited to be working with Lal Jose and Fahad in ‘Diamond Necklace’: Gauthami Nair in ‘Balcony Baatein’
Gauthami Nair, the charming young actress who has left an impression in the viewers’ minds with her debut film ‘Second Show’ is quite animated about her new movie ‘Diamond Necklace’ that would grace the screens on the 4th of May. Here is Balcony Beats in a conversation with the super confident Gauthami, where she talks about her foray into films, her leading men – Dulquar Salman and Fahad Fazil, and above everything else, as to why she thinks the ‘Diamond Necklace’ is real special!
BB: I have heard that you are a doctor aspirant, who turned to films. How did that happen?
Gauthami: Yep! I wanted to go for Medicine, but then ‘Second Show’ happened. I had got admission as well, but I knew it would be impossible to squeeze in the shooting schedules into an academic year at the Medical College. So I decided to drop Medicine, and at the moment I’m pursuing a correspondence course in Psychology.
BB: That’s great! How did you land up with the ‘Second Show’ offer?
Gauthami: A friend of my cousin was the Assistant Director of the film, and they had sent over my pictures to the director. It was when I was asked to appear for an audition that I myself came to know about it! And the audition over, I was in!
BB: Do you still remember your first shot?
Gauthami: Oh yes! It was this shot that had me in a car with Dulquar, and we were having a conversation!
BB: Did you feel the jitters while facing the camera for the first time ever?
Gauthami: Hmm…No! I really didn’t have that problem, and I’m quite happy about that!
BB: I guess you should be a born performer then? Or is it that you have had some experience before hand, of being in front of the camera?
Gauthami: Nope…I wouldn’t call myself a born performer, but I would say I’m not that shy in front of the camera. I had never had any prior experience as well, and ‘Second Show’ was the first ever occasion when I faced the camera. And in fact I feel I’ve got better now, having learned quite a bit from my first two films.
Gauthami: Dulquar is a gem of a person, a very nice guy, who is absolutely down to earth…so yeah…it was great fun working with him. He was very obliging too, and having attended acting classes in Mumbai, he would always offer me supportive suggestions with regard to my performance, voice modulation and so on. He was extremely helpful!
BB: Did it make you a bit nervous that you were acting along with Mammootty’s son?
Gauthami: After the audition was over, I was told that a new hero would be making his debut along with me, and I didn’t have a clue as to who that was going to be. It was much later that they called both of us – me and Dulquar – and we were made to sit together, and they clicked a few pictures to see how we looked on camera. Until then, I had absolutely no idea that Dulquar was Mammoott’s son; in fact I didn’t even know that Mammootty had a son! After a couple of days, it was director Srinath Rajendran, who himself told me that Dulquar was Mammootty’s son, and I was like totally surprised!
BB: I have seen ‘Second Show’, and should say that I was very impressed. And how could I forget that one scene in particular, that had the entire male audience clapping in delight – the one in which Dulquar says ‘Annum, Innum, Ennum, Penninu Kaamukan Panam Thanne’ (There is only one lover that women have always had – Money)! As a woman, how much do you agree with a blatantly sexist statement as that?
Gauthami: (laughs) I guess Geethu, the character I played in ‘Second Show’ probably didn’t want to end up in a real bad situation midway through her life! Security is definitely something that every individual would want in their lives. I don’t know personally… but I do know that I wouldn’t dump a guy for money, that’s for sure. Probably there might be people who do that, but I wouldn’t want to comment on it! (laughs)
BB: How were the responses to your performance in ‘Second Show’?
Gauthami: I should accept that there were a whole lot of expectations regarding the film, since Dulquar was doing the lead role. It did help a lot, and a lot of people actually went and saw the film. Even people, whom I didn’t expect to see the film, saw it and people recognize me as the girl from ‘Second Show’.
BB: All right. You played a nurse in ‘Second Show’, and I know that you play a nurse again in Lal Jose’s new film ‘Diamond Necklace’. What do you think is that primary characteristic within you that makes directors want to cast you as a nurse in their films?
Gauthami: Noooooooooo… (laughs) I do agree that I play a nurse in both the films, but these two characters are entirely different from one another. The character that I play in Lal Jose’s film was initially supposed to be done by Amala Paul, but she couldn’t be a part of the film. So they were on the lookout for another girl, my name was suggested, and it was thus that I ended up playing this role.
BB: Could you elaborate a little bit on the role that you are playing in ‘Diamond Necklace’?
Gauthami: I play a Tamil girl in the film, a nurse, who lands up in Dubai to make some money, thereby hoping to resolve a few financial issues that she has, back home. It’s here in Dubai, that she meets Fahad, and their meeting transforms her life forever.
Gauthami: It was an amazing experience. I had heard that he is a very strict director, and that he can be quite tough on the sets. But none of that really did happen, and he was so very helpful and caring. Above everything else, acting in ‘Diamond Necklace’ has been a tutoring session – one huge learning experience for me. I feel that you basically grow as a person while you are collaborating with Lal Jose on a film and he teaches you so many things – how to present yourself, how to speak and what not. It has been simply great.
BB: How was the outdoor shoot in Dubai?
Gauthami: They had planned about two months of shooting in Dubai, which went on fantastically well. A few song sequences were later canned at Pollachi.
BB: You have been paired with Fahad Fazil in ‘Diamond Necklace’. It’s a youngster cast in the film. Did you guys have a blast on the sets?
Gauthami: I was very happy to be associating with Fahad. I remember right from the time I was doing ‘Second Show’, I wanted to work with Fahad. So when the ‘Diamond Necklace’ offer came my way, it was like a combo pack for me – Lal Jose and Fahad Fazil together! I was super excited about it! Fahad is a wonderful person to work with.
BB: ‘Diamond Necklace’ is a film that has three heroines in it. Does it make you insecure that you have been cast with two other girls in the film?
Gauthami: No…it doesn’t. In fact, I really love my character in ‘Diamond Necklace’, and it’s been a challenge for me, performance wise. It’s a character that demands so much of variations in emotions, and I don’t think there is any reason for me to feel insecure or intimidated by the number of heroines in the film.
BB: Are you a movie buff, and do you get to see lots of Malayalam films?
Gauthami: Oh yes… I have been busy watching lots of Malayalam films, lately. Even when I was in Kuwait, I loved watching Malayalam films, but not many films used to be released there then, nor did we have Malayalam television channels. So my Malayalam film viewing was often restricted to the couple of months that I would spend in Kerala every year, during vacations.
BB: Do you have any role models as such?
Gauthami: I like lots of heroines; and each one of them has got her own style and a unique way of presenting themselves or portraying a character. Picking out any one of them could be quite hard.
BB: And what are your future projects going to be?
Gauthami: Yep… there have been a few offers, but I am yet to commit myself to any of them. I would rather wait for ‘Diamond Necklace’ to be released this week, and take it forward from there.
BB: Besties for ‘Diamond Necklace’, Gauthami! A pleasure talking to you!
Gauthami: Thank you so much!
Tags: Diamond Necklace, Fahad Fazil, Gauthami Nair, Lal Jose