A character who becomes an unexpected witness to Georgekutty’s biggest secret, was director Jeethu Joseph's surprise element in Drishyam 2.
Meanwhile, Ajith Koothatukulam, a mimicry artiste, is thrilled that he could play the role of Jose, who brings in a major breakthrough in the plot.
A professional mimicry artiste, who was part of many prominent troupes, Ajith has presented many viral skits on comedy programs in various television channels. Ajith, who was one of the participants in Thakapan Comedy aired on Mazhavil Manorama, was noticed by director Jeethu Joseph. For the actor, the phone call from the superstar director, offering him a significant role, was nothing short of a dream. Ajith Koothattukulam, who is basking in the mega success of Drishyam 2, gets candid to Onmanorama about his Drishyam 2 experience.
Is Drishyam 2 your first movie?
Drishyam 2 is not my first movie. I had essayed small roles in a few other movies. However, those roles didn’t get noticed. Jeethu sir had called me after watching my performances in Thakarpan Comedy on Mazhavil Manorama.
How did you feel when you got the opportunity to perform alongside a stellar star cast?
I had watched Drishyam in the theater and had applauded and cheered. However, I never imagined that I would act in its sequel. I can only say that it is God’s grace. Those who have watched Drishyam were sure that the sequel too would be a super hit. A movie made by a fabulous team of Jeethu sir, Lalettan and Antony Perumbavoor cannot go wrong, right? I am very happy that I too could be a part of it.
There is a rumour that you had appeared in a scene in Drishyam?
I too had heard it but that is not true. I had only watched Drishyam in the theatre. I hadn’t even gone anywhere near the location of that movie. Not only Drishyam, I don’t usually go the location of any movie unless I am in it. People have been saying this after spotting someone who looks like me on the screen. It is for the first time that I am acting in Jeethu sir’s movie. They might have spotted someone else in the prequel.
Jeethu and you hail from the same home town. Did you know each other?
I knew that Jeethu sir hailed from Kuthattukulam. His house is close to mine. But, he doesn’t live there now. When he asked me where I am from, I said Kuthattukulam. He then said it is his home town too. I told him I knew that and that his house is closer to my place.
Jeethu sir had called me as he liked my performance in Thakarpan comedy. I, Rajesh Paravur and Sumesh had performed in that. Thakarpan Comedy had become viral during the lockdown period. Lots of videos and clips from the show had been doing the rounds on the social media. Few of my skits too had become viral. I had also done a comedy version of Drishyam in the show.
I was a bit scared when he offered me a role in the sequel. He had asked me to send him a few pictures. My hands were shaking with fear when I was clicking the selfies. I called him and said that I would click a few pictures at the studio and send those. But he asked me to meet him when he comes to see the location for Drishyam 2. When I met him, he explained about the plot and my character. I was stressed and worried. Even when he had narrated the story, I didn’t think I would actually act in it. I was shocked when I watched the film. It was only then that I realized the significance of my character.
What did your family say about the movie?
My family is very happy. I live with my parents, wife and two kids. My kids are really thrilled. Usually, there will be a smile on my face whenever I do comedy. But my character didn’t laugh even in one scene in this movie; it is a very serious character. My kids said that I did well. My friends and people in the locality too are happy. I am receiving non-stop phone calls, congratulating me.
How did you enter the mimicry field?
I used to do mimicry when I was in college. Along with four or five friends, I had done programs during temple festivals and other events. After that, I used to work as a carpenter for extra earnings. I was part of many troupes including Aby’s Cochin Sagar and Cochin Kalabhavan. It was during that time that I met Ullas Padalam and got an opportunity to perform in Comedy Stars. I then performed in lots of television programs. I even performed in a few Gulf shows. However, stage shows got stalled after the pandemic situation worsened. The filming of Thakarpan Comedy too was stopped. It was then that Jeethu sir called me for the movie.
What was your experience acting alongside Mohanlal?
It was almost like a dream. Lalettan is a superstar who we all admire and love. To be able to share screen space with him was like a dream come true for me. I had wished to act in movies. But, now, I got more than what I had dreamed. I wasn’t sure how to behave when I meet him. Jeethu sir, however, told me not to be scared.
During the filming, Mohanlal came on the sets and asked for the actor who was doing the role of Jose. Jeethu sir said I was essaying the character. He also told Mohanlal that I am a comedy artiste. Mohanlal then asked me whether we had met and spoke earlier. When I said no, he said he felt as if we had spoken earlier. I was becoming relaxed by then. He then explained how to react and perform in a scene. It was the scene in which he was talking to me as if he isn’t interested. After the scenes, he patted on my shoulder and said that I did well. I felt so relaxed after that. Mohanlal is someone who supports new actors and holds us closer so that we wouldn’t be stressed.
What were your experiences on the sets?
Everyone had undergone Covid tests before checking into the rooms. We couldn’t talk too much or have fun on the sets. Jeethu sir made sure that the Covid-19 protocols were strictly followed. The filming of few other movies got stalled as crew members had tested positive. Jeethu sir kept telling us that we should be very careful and that the filming shouldn’t be stalled. No one was allowed to go out of the bubble. I got a chance to meet everyone. Besides, there weren’t any onlookers or crowds watching the filming. Only the actors who are in the scene would be there at the time. Everyone was friendly and I had an incredible experience shooting for the movie.
What are your latest projects?
Lots of people are calling to congratulate me after watching Drishyam 2. I hope that I would get more offers in good movies. I am a mimicry artiste and had done a serious role in Drishyam 2. My friends say that I did well in the movie and good offers would come my way. My first wish was to become a mimicry artiste. I grew up watching Abi and Nadirsha perform mimicry during temple festivals. I had dreamed to become a successful mimicry artiste since then. I am glad that I could achieve that dream.
I got the chance to be part of many professional troupes and have earned a name in this field. I then wished to act in movies. I didn’t ask for any opportunities; but what I got now is something beyond my dreams. God has given me this opportunity. I would be happy to do more movies. However, I have no plans to leave comedy programs. I would continue doing stage shows as I earn a living from it.
Stage programs stopped after the pandemic outbreak. But I continued doing television programs. My greatest happiness is that I have been invited as a guest on the same floor where I have performed. It is the best honour that an artiste like me could get. My dream to act alongside Mohanlal is fulfilled. Now, I wish to act with Mammootty and Fahadh Faasil. I got everything quite unexpectedly. I believe that this too would happen likewise.