GoT actor James Cosmo wanted a dance number featuring him in Jagame Thanthiram, reveals director Karthik Subbaraj
The director also explained why he wanted to set his movie in Madurai and London
Ahead of the release of the Dhanush starrer Jagame Thanthiram, which is all set for its premiere on Netflix on June 18, Netflix India hosted a virtual event with director Karthik Subbaraj, music director Santhosh Narayanan, singer Dhee, choreographer Sheriff ‘Master’, and actors Kalaiyarasan and Sharath Ravi in attendance.
The two-hour long interaction with the media and fans, albeit virtual, was a fun and engaging session with the makers and artistes sharing hilarious anecdotes from the shoot.
Karthik Subbaraj revealed that Game of Thrones actor James Cosmo, who plays the antagonist in Jagame Thanthiram, wanted a song and dance number featuring him, the director said, “Indian cinema is famous for its song routines in films, and James Cosmo, who was fascinated by that concept, had been looking forward to one such song featuring him.”
“First, he was very excited after hearing that it was an Indian film,” Karthik added.
Karthik had gently told James that there would be songs and dance numbers in the movie, but not featuring James, which James was reportedly disappointed with.
Talking about the initial thought process behind the movie, Karthik admitted that he is inspired by gangster movies like The Godfather and had gotten the idea when he was talking a walk in New York. He wished to create a movie that showed what would happen when a gangster in New York — since most gangster films were reportedly based out of that city — came across a rugged, ‘local’ gangster from Tamil Nadu’s Madurai.
Karthik added that they had to change their location to London instead due to the constraints with Hollywood actors and finance. When asked why Madurai was specifically chosen as the location for the movie's premise, the director admitted that: It was where he is from, and he found it comforting to create characters from that place. Another reason he preferred to highlight the city was that New York and Madurai, though situated in different continents, were both culturally diverse in their own ways. Apart from that, we see the protagonist playing the role of a ‘parotta’ (a type of roti) master in the film, and since Madurai has always been famous for parotta, Karthik thought it would be apt to have the lead character’s roots in Madurai.
Furthermore, many of Karthik’s movies star only actresses from Kerala. Whether it was Ramya Nambeesan in Pizza, Lakshmi Menon in Jigarthanda, Megha Akash in Petta, and Aishwarya Lekshmi in Jagame Thanthiram, all of them come with a Malayali background.
However, Karthik dismissed the notion that he picked female lead roles based on the state they were from, he said, “I chose actresses after the usual audition process to assess acting, irrespective of their background.” When asked why he picked Aishwarya Lekshmi for this movie, he said, “I admired Aishwarya Lekshmi’s commendable performance in the 2017 Malayalam film Mayanadi, and after that I was keen to cast her in my films.”