Bala's characterizations turn ordinary actors into Stars & Superstars

Bala's characterizations turn ordinary actors into Stars & Superstars

Ever since he burst onto the scene in 1999 with the path breaking 'Sethu', Bala's films have been about men and women who are outcasts, who live on the edge unnoticed by society or seen with skepticism and contempt. The National Award winning director has an uncanny ability to get his actors to portray his characters with seamless perfection which not only wins accolades for him as a director but makes stars and superstars of the actors who hitherto seemed just ordinary. On the eve of the release of 'Thaarai Thappattai' we take a look at some of the actors who have been molded by Bala bringing out their career best performances.

Vikram - 'Sethu' & 'Pithamagan'

Vikram - 'Sethu' & 'Pithamagan'

Before becoming Chiyaan, Vikram who had done a few films as hero wasn't noticed at all by Tamil audiences and in the industry he was even considered unlucky. All that changed with 'Sethu' which brought out the amazing actor who is now known and respected all over the globe. Bala extracted another astounding performance from Vikram as the animalistic grave keeper in 'Pitha Magan'.

Suriya - 'Nanda' & 'Pithamagan'

Suriya - 'Nanda' & 'Pithamagan'

Suriya after a grand introduction by Maniratnam's banner in 'Nerukku Ner' was dismissed as a non actor and it is not far from the truth to say he did have an awkward screen presence. Ajith walked out of Bala's 'Nanda' and the unflinching director immediately took Suriya on board and the rest is history as the actor is now considered a modern day Kamal Haasan. If in 'Nanda' Bala brought out an intense performance from Suriya, in 'Pitha Magan' he gave the actor the opportunity to enact a character with shades of humor, romance and tragedy which helped shape him into a superstar.

Sangeetha - 'Pitha Magan'

Sangeetha - 'Pitha Magan'

Sangeetha has done close to thirty films in her career, but her very name brings to memory only Gomathi, the opium seller in 'Pithamagan' a character that stands out on par with the lead heroes in the film. It's unfathomable how Bala thought of Sangeetha a very modern looking actress for that very rural fringe character.

Arya - 'Naan Kadavul' & 'Avan Ivan'

Arya - 'Naan Kadavul' & 'Avan Ivan'

Again, it was a role written for Ajith and again destiny did not allow it and when Arya was booked for 'Naan Kadavul' many skeptical voices could be heard whether the chocolate boy can replace Thala. When the film hit the screens all the critics were silenced because the master of characterizations was at work and Arya became one of the most bankable stars in Kollywood. The coming together of the hero and the director once again for 'Avan Ivan' too paid rich dividends.

Vishal - 'Avan Ivan'

Vishal - 'Avan Ivan'

Who would even imagine macho man Vishal playing an effeminate role, but Bala did and what a transformation it was for the actor who was only after that considered a marketable hero and today he has risen to the status of the Nadigar Sangam secretary. Vishal is said to have permanently damaged his eye due to playing the cockeyed Walter Vanangamudi but he repeatedly asserts in all his interviews that the minute Bala wants him for a role he will be at his doorstep first thing.

Ambika - 'Avan Ivan'

Ambika - 'Avan Ivan'

Rajini and Kamal's constant leading lady during the 80s Ambika has mostly appeared as a soft heroine in all her films. After making a comeback as a character artiste she did not have any film that made an impact on the audiences. Those who watched 'Avan Ivan' came in for a pleasant surprise when Ambika appeared as the mother of Arya's character and the way she fit into the foul mouthed Maryamma's skin makes this her all time best.

Ananth Vaidyanathan - 'Avan Ivan'

Ananth Vaidyanathan - 'Avan Ivan'

One of India's topmost voice gurus, Ananth Vaidyanathan's very appearance looks commanding, but Bala cast him as a squeaky cowardly bigamist in 'Avan Ivan' who is given scant respect by his wives and sons. Ananth fitted the role so well that only if we mention it people can relate the role to him.

R.K - 'Avan Ivan'

R.K - 'Avan Ivan'

Businessman turned hero R.K., enjoyed a small following by appearing as a hero in films directed by Shaji Kailaas who mostly remade his Suresh Gopi starrer Malayalam hits. Bala made R.K. go through a complete makeover by changing his appearance and cast him as the menacing cattle smuggler antagonist in 'Avan Ivan' which received widespread appreciation for the actor.

Atharva - 'Paradesi'

Atharva - 'Paradesi'Ever since he burst onto the scene in 1999 with the path breaking ‘Sethu’, Bala’s films have been about men and women who are outcasts, who live on the edge unnoticed by society or seen with skepticism and contempt....

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