Those who have watched the movie Aramm wouldn’t forget the character Sumathi – her love for her husband, children and the emotions she goes through during the testing times in her life. She would leave you teary-eyed. Kochi-based Sunu Lakshmi, a dancer-cum-actor, who enlivened the character, is on cloud nine after listening to the feedback. “I am happy that audience of Kerala and Tamil Nadu received the movie. The movie got bigger through word of mouth,” says Sunu, who is currently in Kochi. It was her previous project Touring Talkies, directed by S.A. Chandrasekhar that led her to Aramm, which narrates a serious tale. Aramm also has Nayanthara in a prominent role, but Sunu’s character has got more space.
In Touring Talkies, Sunu played a character who fights against those who raped her sister. “That was a good character. That character had some resemblance with Sumathi. Seeing that, Gopi Nainar sir invited me to Aramm,” says Sunu. She is the mother of two children in Aramm. Sunu says she was a little hesitant to pick up the character at first. “It is my mother who selects my movies. When Gopi sir’s manager briefed my mother about the character, she was excited, but I was not. I told her that I didn’t want to play a mother at the age of 23,” Sunu laughs recalling those days.
But, things changed when she reached Chennai. She liked the story and got convinced. Gopi asked her to enact one scene from Touring Talkies, which he liked. Then the team went to a distant place, the location of Aramm. Things were beginning to change. The child artiste who plays Sunu’s child in the movie was present on the location and they became friends quickly. Other child artistes too joined and a bond developed between them. “During lunch time, they would come and eat with me. Gradually a mother-child relationship formed between us,” Sunu smiles. In her words, it was this bond mirrored on the screen.
The bond was too deep that her heart pained a lot during those crucial scenes. “I felt that it happened to my own child,” she says. She fails to express the emotions in words. “There is one sequence where my character is taken to an ambulance and my son cries. Ramesh, who played my son, literally cried on the scene. In fact, none of them used glycerin during emotional sequences,” says Sunu. Being Sumathi was no cakewalk. The crucial part was shot on a 5-acre land and Sunu had to be there the whole day. “I was wearing no chappals and I got fever eventually.” Sunu is happy that her hard work paid off. “Many said I would get a national award for this. But, for me, the award is people’s love,” she turns emotional. But, Sunu doesn’t want to repeat the rural character. She needs a change and is looking forward to that.