"i am ready for a relationship" - Simbu
Silambarasan Tesingu Rajender aka STR or just Simbu, began his career as a child artiste in films produced by his father, T Rajender before essaying his first lead role in Kadhal Azhivathillai in 2002. Today, he is an actor, director, lyricist, playback singer and above all, the most eligible bachelor in K-Town.
From being Little Superstar to what you are today, give us a brief take on your growth
Just because I am from a film background, it did not insulate me from trouble or struggle. During cultural events and dance shows in my school, for some reason, I was never made the lead dancer. You would find me dancing somewhere in the last row! I used to cry, and vowed to my teachers that one day I would become a star. I got into the industry which had / has several internal politics. I learnt to stand up to every situation. Without any doubt, it is my dad who has been instrumental in my growth. He taught me to be myself, to stay bold. My baby steps in the world of movies were because of him. I have seen him direct and produce movies, compose and score songs, and have learnt most of what I know today only from him. I have always been inspired by the way he multi-tasks. Above all, he has taught me to take life in my stride, and to believe in myself.
You are a sensation. But you seem to be extremely choosy with your roles. Why?
Basically, I don’t like stereotyping my roles. I do not do a project because it has a huge budget or star cast. When I listen to a script, I always ask myself these questions: ‘Will I suit the character? Do I need to do this film? Will my audience enjoy my character?’ My key aspect of being an actor is to entertain, and this is how I end up picking varied roles, from a lover boy to a street rowdy.
Do you keep track of your fans’ wishes and choose accordingly? What do you want to become in the industry?
Yeah, I do! These days we have several networking sites like Facebook and Twitter, and I visit my fan page on them. There is one set of the audience that gives suggestions and concrete ideas about the teasers that are uploaded. I read all the feedback and I try to understand what the maximum number of people are voting for. And then, there is another set that just keys in something, half of which does not even make sense. I also use my Facebook fan page if I have to give out any specific messages to my audience. I was the first to upload the teaser of Love Anthem there. Down the lane, I see myself probably directing, producing and doing a lot of interesting movies.
Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa was a milestone in your career. After that there was so much talk about Vaanam. Now there seems to be a big pause in your career. Comment.
I am not a person who does two or three projects at a time. However, my hands are full now with a couple of movies. I like releasing my films with a year’s gap between each. By then, my fans are full of anticipation, and the hype can work wonders. Like any other actor, I have my own expectations from each film. I always wish all my movies are a bumper success.
What do you expect from a film or a director? How do you improvise on the directors’ imagination to suit STR, the actor?
I know what I am getting into before I do a character. I contemplate on it, and only then take it up. I never try to improvise or add my own inputs to a character, because the director is very sure of what he wants, and so am I by then. When I did VTV, I knew that the character would be a hit with women, and it was. There were many girls who came to watch my next movie, Osthe. VTV kind of enhanced my fan base (smiles).
How do fans perceive you? What do you think your image is? Some dos and don’ts you have formulated accordingly.
My fans are my plus point. They have liked me, and have pushed me to be myself whatever be the issue or controversy. Basically, I am frank and straight forward, and that’s something I guess my fans adore about me. Most people who are in love don’t acknowledge it, but I did. What does a guy do when he falls in love? He goes to his friends and says, “Macha, I am in love da or adhu dhaan yen figure da (she is my girl).” But when Simbu does this, it becomes big news (smirks)! I have no don’ts in my rulebook. My fans like me for my work.
So many actors are turning producers now. Do you think you will also start a production house eventually?
Right on! I am turning producer sometime next year. It will, of course, be one of the movies I am in. So, wait and watch out for it.
Who do you think your competitor is? And who do you think your best on-screen pair is?
Honestly, my biggest competitor is ME, MYSELF! You see, I gave a hit with Loosu Penne, and then I had to do something that was even better, so, I did Where Is The Party Tonight? And that was followed by another super hit song Evan Di Unna Pethaan. I challenge myself and work on producing something bigger and better every time. I don’t find satisfaction if I don’t challenge myself. With regard to the best on-screen pair, it has to be Trisha and Jyothika. My on-screen chemistry with them has worked very well.
Was Love Anthem a tool to react to competition? What are you now working on? Why this sudden diversion?