The year 2018, so far, has been quite eventful for Tovino Thomas. Hit movies like Aami, Maradona and Theevandi, Tamil debut with Abhiyum Anuvum and the much-awaited Oru Kuprasidha Payyan, which is slated for release on November 9. With Madhupal at helm and the trailer getting good response, the expectations on Oru Kuprasidha Payyan are very high.
Beginning the conversation by saying he wouldn’t divulge much about the film, Tovino hints at an excellent experience at theatres. “The movie will definitely be an emotionally engaging one. When Madhupal sir narrated me the story initially, I felt that the subject is very crucial and requires serious making. Playing Ajayan was hectic, but the support of strong team made it easier,” says Tovino, who is in awe of Madhupal. “He briefs the actors even the minute details and ensures that we bring out our best. All the unit members shared a great camaraderie and the vibes helped us well.”
Tovino is currently shooting for Jose Sebastian’s Ente Ummante Peru, in which he acts alongside Urvashi. “I play Hameed, a youngster who runs an antique shop. The movie has a very interesting storyline. Most of my combination scenes are with Urvashi chechi; we got along very well right from the beginning and it is a very jovial set.”
Having wrapped up the shooting for Prithviraj’s directorial debut Lucifer, Tovino is very happy to be directed by his ‘bro’. Like most of the actors in the movie, his character too is kept as suspense. “I’m sure that every artist associated with Lucifer would have had different kind of experience as it is being directed by a superstar. However, after the shooting began, we see only the director in Prithvi. He has set a mark for every character and was successful in delivering what he needs from each artiste. I play an extended cameo in the movie. Whatever scenes I had, I really enjoyed it all.”
After wrapping up Ente Ummante Peru, Tovino will joining the next schedule of Salim Ahamed’s And the Oscar Goes to.
Then there’s Kilometres and Kilometres directed by Jeo Baby, who had directed him in 2 Penkuttikal. “This project was discussed during the shoot of 2 Penkuttikal. The content of the film is so captivating and is a humour-based entertainer.”
The actor also shares his excitement about the release of Maari 2, in which he portrays a negative character, pitted against Dhaunsh.
Apart from movies, Tovino is known for taking a stance on various social issues as evident during the recent Kerala floods, where he was in the forefront of relief activities. His active presence at relief camps and collection centres were appreciated by many, but there were critics who called it a publicity stunt. Tovino seems least bothered by negativity, “Initially I was sad seeing those comments, but later I felt that those who criticise might have engaged in or experienced only publicity stunts. There are common men who understand me. I have always been part of such activities at my native place, but people started noticing it only when I became an artiste. I just neglect these negative comments, or else the negative vibes will get to me. I’ve always went with my heart and I don’t intend to change.”
Most of his recent projects are helmed by debutants. Tovino says that he chooses the best scripts that come his way and it just happens to be from new directors. “I have only two conditions to choose a project — content with substance and space to perform. Movie, being an art form, should have artistic value and should do justice to the artistes. The audience should be entertained and should leave the theatres happy. Finally, the business part — the film shouldn’t incur loss to the producer, and I consider that as my responsibility too. Getting good responses and being a ‘Torrent hit’ may benefit the artiste, but never the producer.”
Awards, he says, is an appreciation for performances and motivates him to keep doing better. “But awards are not the ultimatum. Awards are given by a jury and I consider it as an appreciation for my hard work. Being in the industry for six years now, I am very happy about myself,” he says.
The greatest factor of victory is time. “There are many talented artistes who are waiting for a chance to prove their mettle. It’s all about being at the right place with the right people at the right moment. I was never carried away by success and have learnt from the failures. Satisfaction is what I crave for; fame and wealth are just by-products. I’m emotionally attached to my movies and crew. Maybe that’s why my wife calls me ‘workaholic’ at times. I love doing my job. I love the way I’m,” he signs off....