Actor-model Janaki Sudheer is no stranger to the Malayali audience. The Venjaramoodu native, whose recent claim to fame was through 'Big Boss Season 4', is excited about her latest release 'Holy Wound', which will stream on the SS Frames OTT platform on Friday.
The actor, who had impressive outings in movies like Dulquer Salmaan's 'Oru Yemandom Premakadha' and 'Chunks', told Onmanorama how she landed the role in the controversial film, which is a lesbian love story between a housewife and a nun.
So, how did this project with director Ashok R Nath happen?
A friend, an associate in 'Holy Wound', introduced me to the movie producer. They had initially decided to cast me as the nun in the movie. However, when I learnt about the central role, I asked the director if I could essay that character. As they were a bit sceptical about it, I shared one of my previous works, a short film with a bold character. My work in it impressed them.
The trailer gives us a glimpse of the intimate scenes in the movie. How comfortable were you doing it?
Honestly, I met Amritha (the actor who plays the nun) a day before we had to do a bold scene. Since we didn't know each other, I was pretty apprehensive about how comfortable I would be during the shot. I expressed my fear to Ashok sir. But I was mentally prepared by the time the shot was called. I closed my eyes and imagined I was kissing my favourite person (laughs). The rest of the intimate scenes were not that tough.
About your character...
I play a local woman, Kala, who collects seashells from the beach. She is married.
Are you as bold as the character you play on screen?
Not really, though I have become quite bold over the years. I did my schooling at Government Higher Secondary School, Venjaramoodu. It was not easy for me to break out of the mould. However, when I came to Kochi, I started exploring my interests and opportunities and realised that I loved modelling. During my initial days as a model, I was quite plump. I started working out because my career demanded it. Since then, I have become very confident about my body. I am a bikini model too, so I guess I am bold.
What was the kind of response you received after the trailer came out?
You receive good and bad comments, especially since the trailer is on social media. I am accustomed to negative comments because I have been modelling. Sometimes the comments are nasty, but I have learnt to ignore them.
The film had its set of controversies…
Yes, the movie faced some setbacks, so we could not release it much earlier. A few nuns had filed a case in the High Court, arguing that the film would hurt religious sentiments. We had to fight all that and convince the community that we did not have such intention. Though one of the lovers is a nun, that was her individual choice and did not have anything to do with any congregation she belonged to.
How was your experience in Bigg Boss Season 4?
It was fun, though I lasted only for a few days. However, I see it all as an experience. My biggest fear was that the movie would release when I was in Mumbai as part of Bigg Boss. I was scared that I would not know how everyone would react to my film and about me without me even knowing it. I am glad it is releasing only now.