NEW YORK, NY (TIP): It was a memorable evening with an artist who easily fits in to any role. Not only acting role, but all kinds of role in the film industry – screenwriter, director, producer, playback singer, choreographer, lyricist, dancer and what not.
I am referring to the one and only one Kamal Hassan who works primarily in the Tamil film industry but has left his deep imprint on Bollywood too with his magnificent performances as an actor.
The evening with Kamal Haasan was arranged, March26bySree Sreenivasan, at the Metropolitan Museum in New York City of which he is the Chief Digital Officer.
While the room was packed to capacity with 300 fans of Kamal Haasan, thousands upon thousand must have watched him address the gathering and answering questions during the question hour session, intelligently moderated by Sree.
Mr. Haasan calls himself “a reluctant actor”. Upon being asked why reluctant, he said as a young person one day he went to see Mr. K. Balachander (late famed director of Tamil Cinema). Mt. Haasan told Mr. Balachander that he wanted to be a director just like him. Balachander answered you want to come to the studio on a rickshaw rather than in a car. Mr. Balachander said you have what it takes to be an actor.Mr. Balachander gave Mr. Haasan his first break. He introduced Mr. Haasan to the Hindi speaking audience with the blockbuster film Ek Duuje Ke Liye. That’s how he became a reluctant actor.
Ek Duuje Ke Liye is one of his favorites movies, he said.
On the question if there was a possibility of his doing a film with Rajinikanth, Mr. Haasan jokingly said, yes, why not; if there is a producer who will have the budget to pay us both our fees.
Mr. Haasan said he does not like doing run of the mill films but he enjoys comedy. It is appreciation from the audience and his hunger for artwhich keep him going.
Also present among the gathering was New York filmmaker-actor Tirlok Malik who worked with Kamal Haasan as US line producer in The Smart Hunt Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu (2006) directed by Gautham Menon. Malik recalled asking Gautham Menon “how did he directan actor like Kamal Haasan?” Menon replied, “You don’t direct actors like him. You navigate them.” Malik asked Kamal Haasan “what was his opinion on the statement?” Mr. Haasan replied “Actor and director for a filmare like a mirror. No matter how good actor you are, you always need a director to navigate you.”