- 26 Jul 2017
The man who's here to stay
For a person who began his career playing Dulquer Salman’s younger version, the film gods sure have been kind to Shalu Rahim. He’s dabbled in many fields, one of them being an engineer. The DJ turned Actor opens up about his life, his childhood, his fears, likes and dislikes to WKochi in a very candid interview.
Where have you been for the past one year?
I was in Kochi for a year, exploring the city and India, actually, to be precise. I did a lot of traveling in that one year. That is your answer to where I was for one year.
Was the one year break a conscious decision or did it just happen?
You could say the one year break was a decision that I made and that it kind of just happened. I got several roles, but somehow the ‘romancham’ feeling didn’t come to me. I did not think I got a role that would break my role in Kammatti Paadam. I did not want to do a role very similar to that again. I wanted something exactly the opposite of what I did.
Let’s get to the characters you play in Anuragam and Kali
In Anuragam, I play the role of a very simple, mellow guy, who minds his own business and doesn’t interfere in anyone else’s life. He’s only got his father for company. This movie is his story. In Kali, I play the role of a Kochi Machan, like the ones we see, ‘Kochi Freaks’! There isn’t much I can reveal at the moment, but my co-star is Vidhya Vijay and the story unfurls. During Kammatti Paadam, I had no clue about the Kochi slang, but now, I think, having lived here for this long, I’ve become a ‘Kochikaran’!
Do you think your co-stars, the other newbies in the industry is competition?
I don’t believe there’s a competition between me and my co-stars. I’m one to believe that if a role’s meant for me it will come to me, so there’s no need to me to feel threatened by anyone else and their success in the industry. They’re all my friends!
How would you say your chemistry was with your co-stars in all three movies?
Everyone knows about the on-screen chemistry in Kammatti Paadam, but yes, I shared a wonderful chemistry with my co-actor. For Anuragam, I shared screen space with Lijo. We had an amazing rapport, and she’s completely different from the roles she plays in real life. She can switch roles instantly. She is a talent. It hardly took two days for me to gel with her. With Vidhya, i’m just getting to know her, and we’ve only had a couple of scenes together. But it seems to be working out fine.
Being a DJ, how did movies happen?
Music was always my passion, so I got into the music field, tried my hand at DJing and realised I was not all that bad. Movies just happened to me, way back in 2006, when I acted in a short film. I’d actually also gotten an offer from director Revathy Varma to act in a movie with Madhavan, but it didn’t go through. That was my first stint at acting, and the rest, as you know, all started with Rajeev Ravi and Kammatti Paadam.
How did you feel when you realised the movie with Madhavan wasn’t happening?
At the age of 10, imagine the amount of excitement I would have had, and I obviously bragged about it to all my friends and then when the movie did not happen, everyone made fun of me. I couldn’t handle that and then I started to hate the movie industry. After that incident, I feel that I can now face anything.
Has your concept about movies and the industry changed after your first movie?
So before my first movie, like I said, back when I was 10 years, I hated the industry. Later on, I loved watching movies, from different languages and genres. But, after my debut, I’ve understood that there’s a preconceived notion about celebrities that they’re all very arrogant. I’d say they’re not, and it’s situations that make them look that way.
How would you describe your career so far? Any special mentions to Rajeev Ravi?
I had stage fear, back then. Once I got into DJing, I realised that I could control the crowd with my music. I thought if I can do that with music, which is an art, I can also do that with my acting. I came into the industry because of Rajeev Ravi and there are no words for me to describe the emotions I have for him.
What are your upcoming projects?
There are a few projects being discussed now, but it’s too early to reveal anything.
Text: Devika V Menon Images: Shalu Rahim