In fact the waiting period (before I bagged the the) was like a suspense thriller. My blood pressure and sugar also shot up. It was the most stressful part of my life.
Then on the 10th day, I was asked to come to Chennai. Shankar wanted to meet me (he was scouting for locations in Italy during his audition and so, had not met him). When I went there, Shankar took me to Dr Mohan, a well-known dentist who works with stars. I was scared whether my teeth were going to be pulled off.
Shankar assured me that Dr Mohan was very good and after giving him instructions, I was asked to sit in the chair. Dr Mohan then took some measurements. I was later told that a 'denture' was necessary as Shankar noticed (in the screen test) that when I smiled, my smile was not visible.
I removed my moustache and Shankar instructed designer Nandini to give me a spotless dhoti, shirt, shoes, a Rolex watch and Ray Ban sunglasses.
Then he explained the role and the character and said Sivaji had only one villain. I was to play Adi Seshan, a powerful businessman. Shankar did not want a villainish look.
It was a dream come true as I always admired Shankar's work and was ready to do a cameo if needed. I was happy to sign the film for three reasons -- firstly, Shankar is a great director, secondly, I got an opportunity to work with Rajnikanth after two decades and thirdly, the AVM banner.
The banner is very respectable and they always made me feel comfortable during my Telugu shoots (the ones I did in their studio). I have known Mr AVM Saravanan very well.
Besides, the AR Rahman (music), KV Anand (director of photography), Thota Tharani (art director) and other technicians were the best in their art. So working with the best is always a thrill.
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