How Arvind Swami was transformed into MGR for Jayalalithaa's biographical film
When the biographical film about the iconic actress and former prime minister of Tamil Nadu, Jayalalithaa It was announced that the most important question in everyone's mind was who will play MG Ramachandran . The late Kollywood superstar, who founded the AIADMK, is believed to be the love of Jayalalithaa’s life and her political mentor, so finding an actor who could fit into the shoes of MGR It was as crucial as finding a suitable protagonist, many thought. But director Vijay had only one name in mind: Arvind Swami.
“We needed someone with a strong screen presence to enact the role of MGR and I was hell-bent on casting Arvind Swami. When you see his performance in the film, you will understand why I say that no one else could’ve pull off the role better,” Vijay tells Hyderabad Times.
Arvind’s look as MGR was released on Friday to mark the former Tamil Nadu chief minister’s 103rd birth anniversary. Vijay reveals that Arvind underwent
several look tests before zeroing in on his look. “Arvind is a perfectionist and he doesn’t stop until he gets everything perfectly right. He watched lots of old films and footage of MGR and attended several workshops to get the body language and mannerisms right. He even visited adentist to make sure his teeth look similar to MGR ’s,” says Vijay, adding, “But we were clear that we didn’t want him to look like a clone of MGR . Arvind worked closely with our make-up man Pattanam Rasheed. He tried eight looks before finally cracking the look we were all satisfied with. ”
Tamil-Telugu bilingual features Kangana Ranaut as Jayalalithaa and Vijay says her scenes with Aravind Swamy will be the USP of the biopic. “ MGR was a mentor to
Jayalalithaa both as an actor and a politician. The duo shared an extremely close bond. Which is why, although this is a Jayalalithaa biopic, MGR is almost like a protagonist. Trust me, when you will see Kangana and Arvind Swami together on screen there will be fireworks. Their onscreen chemistry is simply outstanding,” beams the Abhinetri director.
While Arvind has aced his look as the superstar MGR , there’s still some way to go before he gets into the shoes of MGR , the politician, says Vijay. “We are yet to shoot the political parts. It will require Arvind to look much more powerful. The transition from a cinema legend to a robust politician will be shown in the film. It will take a
few weeks of preparation, after which we will resume filming in Chennai, says the filmmaker, closing the session.