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'Jersey' was inspired by a speech: Gowtam Tinnanuri

Saturday, April 20, 2019 • Tamil Comments

Jersey was inspired by a speech: Gowtam Tinnanuri

Director Gowtam Tinnanuri is the man of the moment after the release of 'Jersey'.  In this interview, he talks about what inspired him to write the story, working with Nani and others, shooting the movie, why the story is the way it is and more.  

That speech birthed 'Jersey'

Some years ago, I happened to listen to a lecture by an IIM-A professor.  He said that although there are many talented cricketers like Sachin Tendulkar in India, there is only one Sachin because he has got the right attitude.  More than Sachin's attitude, what engaged me is the fact that others who are equally talented have remained failures due to whatever reasons.  It's this thought that inspired me to write 'Jersey'.

No research

Since I have always watched cricket since childhood, I never did any research for 'Jersey'.  Much time was spent on writing the story, though.  I wanted to make this movie before 'Malli Raava', but I couldn't do it.  

Triumph of a late bloomer

Arjun (Nani) doesn't play cricket for the sake of Rs 500.  I can answer the questions of all skeptics.  However, I don't want to take any skeptical questions regarding the climax as it's just Day 2.  The climax would be revealed if I say anything more.  As far as I am concerned, it's the story of the triumph of a person who is written off by everyone.  I have told the story of a late bloomer.  When it comes to sports, physical ability is paramount.  That's why I have chosen that backdrop.  

Heroine's behaviour is realistic

If you would see the story of 'Jersey' through Sara (Shraddha Srinath), you will get a different output.  She is not wrong anywhere in the story.  Sara likes Arjun when he is a classy cricketer.  She loves him and marries him.  Ten years later, she is not that enthusiastic about Arjun taking up cricket again.  That happens in real life as well.  It's not easy to accept it when your family member decides to try something all over again long after giving up the aim.

Cricket match scenes were back-breaking

Shooting the cricket match scenes was not easy at all.  Just to shoot a minute's footage, it would take a day or more.  The camera needs to pan over the cricket ground sometimes. 

Cinematic liberties

We have shown a red ball in a day-and-night match.  It should have been a white ball.  It's because if the ball is white, the batsman should have colour costumes.  I was not for colour costumes.  So, we took the cinematic liberty of going for a red ball.

I have shown 35 members as semi-finalists for Ranji Trophy.  It's a cinematic liberty that I took.  Usually, a larger bunch is considered for short-listing.  

The contrast in hero's life

Arjun and Sara live in a small house.  There is no proper communication between them.  When the same Arjun plays cricket in a large space, in a cricket ground, even those who don't know him cheer for him.  That is a contrast in his life.  

Heroes are amidst us

We look up to heroes.  But there are heroes around us and we ignore them.  It could your father, brother, sister, etc.  The journey is much more important than the end.  That's what the film says.  More than Arjun getting to play in the Indian cricket team, his struggle to reach there is what matters.  

No similarities with 'Majili'

I know Shiva Nirvana personally.  When 'Majili' and 'Jersey' were announced, we both sat down and discussed our stories.  We realized that there is no commonality between the two.

Child artist is hyper

Ronit is from Delhi.  He is a charged-up guy.  My assistant Vinay trained the guy in Telugu, dialogue delivery, etc for a month.  

Observations give ideas

I have never been through struggles as much as Arun in 'Jersey'.  Both 'Malli Raava' and 'Jersey' have come out from my observations, imagination, etc.  I have infused some reactions of people in my movies.  

Had it not been for Nani, I might have cast some Kollywood actor, perhaps.  

Upcoming movie

I don't know what kind of genre I will choose next.  I choose my hero only after the story is ready.  These days, the audience are receptive to new content.  I may not be able to handle a Bollywood project. 

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