Sheela Rajkumar: I find a hero in Yogi Babu

After playing a key role in Azhagiya Thamizh Magal, Sheela Rajkumar won the hearts of fans. Prior to acting in the serial, she was part of the movie To Let that was screened at many international film festivals and swept awards. After its theatrical release, she was widely acclaimed.

She then decided to concentrate more on big screen. In Malayalam, Sheela acted in Fahadh Faazil’s Kumbalangi Nights. The movie was adjudged the best in Kerala State awards.

A chat with Sheela Rajkumar reveals how joyous she is with plenty of quality films. Her clarity of thoughts is appealing.

“I am happy that my Malayalam venture Kumbalangi Nights won the Kerala State award. I am overwhelmed to have been part of it. I am currently acting in six films now. Two of those films should have been released during lockdown time. Four other ventures are in different stages of production,” she says.

In Mandela, produced by Y Not Studios and Balaji Mohan, she plays Yogi Babu’s heroine. She is also acting in Shankar’s assistant Raja Shankar’s directorial Vanjai, which is a crime thriller.

Indian 2 costume designer Sai is producing a horror movie in which she plays the heroine. “It is a bilingual being made in Tamil and Telugu. Shooting will resume soon,” she adds.

“Since all my films are helmed by debutants, they are coming up with strong characters. I consider myself to be part of such ventures,” she states.

She says that fans tell her that she looks like a girl next door and so, she wants her characters, too, to resemble the same. “To Let helped me lay my foundation as actress. Watching the movie in international fests, actor Mohanlal’s manager wanted me to be part of Kumbalangi Nights,” she adds.

Many popular actress in Malayalam cinema were auditioned to act in the role. When the makers were not satisfied, she auditioned for the role and got selected on the same day, she informs.

“I got just few dialogues in the movie. My facial expressions had to do the rest. Actor Shoubin, who acted in the film, came up to me before a shot and did rehearsals of falling in my feet. It helped me give my best in the scene,” she says.

The actress says she is not keen on playing only heroine roles. “I don’t want to get stereotyped. I love to act in commercial cinema. But there is an urge to act in big star films. I am ready to be part of movies that have strong storylines. I want to quality films,” she quips.

Talking about Mandela, she says, “I am happy to play Yogi Babu’s heroine in Mandela. It is a different genre. People will see a wonderful actor in Yogi Babu. Though he may see himself as comedian, I find a hero in him. He will make you laugh, and he will make you cry, too. I learnt a lot working with him,” she says.

“This coronavirus has not only spelt doom on cinema, it has also shaken the lives of all. For everyone, it is a challenge. Few things that we feared to try were attempted during the lockdown, which facilitated me to try such attempts. Lets stay positive,” she winds up.