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Actor Roshan Mathew Reflects on His Journey

Someone who had his first major role in the 2016 film ’Puthiya Niyamam’, admits that ‘Darlings’ (2022) has been like a steroid for him…reports Asian Lite News

He may have been discovered by Hindi audiences post his appearance in the film ‘Darlings’, though actor Roshan Mathew, who started his career with theatre, has long been effortlessly navigating the Malayalam, Tamil, and Telugu film industries.

A pass-out from the Drama School in Mumbai, the actor smiles that it can be torturous watching one’s work on the screen and a lot of people feel that way.

“Of course, it is essential to set your expectations high as one strives for artistic excellence. But remember, the actor enters the movie for a short duration during the entire filmmaking process. It is the director, who is involved in every aspect of the process. By the time the film comes out, and you watch yourself on the screen, you already know what is going to happen. One is surprised to observe the work that has gone into the post-production phase and all. So many people embellish your work. But yes, I have been trying to teach myself to get better at watching myself.”

Someone who had his first major role in the 2016 film ’Puthiya Niyamam’, admits that ‘Darlings’ (2022) has been like a steroid for him.

“It was the biggest project I have worked on, both in terms of scale and stars. Every actor needs ‘visibility’, and I do not come from a film factory. ‘Darlings’ was watched by a large number of people and I quite liked my character in it,” said the actor, whose father is a bank manager and mother a retired PWD engineer in Kottayam.

Even though Mathew works in diverse industries, he always ‘comes back’ to Malayalam cinema.

Stressing that is where he belongs and that is where his story started, he said: “My childhood was spent mostly in Kerala. Besides, fantastic films are being made in Malayalam. So many people continue to inspire me and the list of people I want to collaborate with is just growing. So there is always a reason to go back home.”

From Karan Johar to filmmakers across the country, everyone is talking about Malayalam films that are making their presence felt at major film festivals across the country and also doing well in theatres. Mathew feels that in Kerala there has always been a climate that lends itself to the growth of independent films.

“As long as there is mainstream, there will always be a parallel stream. As long as there are people brave enough to think and envision, independent cinema will continue to thrive,” said the actor, who was in Chandigarh during the recently concluded CineVesture International Film Festival (CIFF).

Is he also looking to work in independent films?

“Of course, I would like to collaborate with parallel streams and people who are not doing mainstream cinema. They bring forth so many original thoughts which can be illuminating to explore,” he smiles.

The actor, who began his career with numerous theatre productions based in Chennai and Mumbai including ’The Glass Menagerie’ directed by Rajit Kapoor and ‘07/07/07’ directed by Faezeh Jalali, feels theatre has taught him everything, and before he did his debut film, he already had five years of professional theatre experience.

“I went into my first shoot with the assurance that I know how to act and the atmospherics were not alien to me.”

Mathew, who played the lead role in ‘Paradise’ (2023), a Sri Lankan-Indian co-produced drama film co-written and directed by Prasanna Vithanage, which is being received well at film festivals across the world, said that he is glad that the movie is travelling so much.

“It is a story that is truly universal, revolving around a couple and things that can happen in a relationship. This film is very special to me, owing to the people involved and the fact that it is multilingual,” concludes the actor, who will soon be seen with Janhvi Kapoor in the film ‘Ulajh’, a web series in Hindi and a Malayalam film.

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