Dhanush plays Avik San in the Russo brothers’ The Gray Man, which is streaming on Netflix, and this film marks the actor’s foray into Hollywood. A snippet from one of the promotional events of the film recently went viral on the internet, and we bet most of you would have watched it. When the actor was asked about a message he would like to give to his younger self, here is what he had to say:
“I’ll tell him don’t worry about people who are trolling you for your looks. One day a big Hollywood hero will call you ‘Sexy Tamil Friend’.”
— Netflix India (@NetflixIndia) July 24, 2022
This is not the first time the actor has let his lighter side show. The actor who is celebrating his 39th birthday today, has revealed some fun nuggets about himself to Film Companion, over the years. Take a look at some of the fascinating things we have learnt about Dhanush from our interviews.
Walking the red carpet
Walking the red carpet is always something quite memorable and Dhanush wanted to savor that moment during the premiere of The Gray Man. “In my head, I was like, ‘This is the first time (this is happening), there’s not going to be another first time.’ Because the first time is always the best experience. So I wanted to make sure to observe everything that was going on around me. To not just absorb this moment, but live it and take it all in,” says the actor.
Dhanush’s first love
Dhanush has donned several hats in the film industry — of that of an actor, director, producer, lyricist, and singer. But cinema isn’t his first love. Dhanush reveals, “I actually wanted to be a chef. I thought cooking was one of the finest arts, the delight on people’s faces when they like something! Once I made something for my father and he really liked it. He wanted me to make him something every day. That really excited me. That feeling I could see on his face motivated me to become a chef.”
When Balu Mahendra thought Dhanush looked like an Italian Model
Dhanush worked with director Balu Mahendra in 2005 for Adhu Oru Kana Kaalam. Talking about how he is probably one of the most important people who defined his career, the actor says, “Balu Mahendra never forces anything on you. He makes sure you do only what’s needed. I don’t know how he does it. He’s a magician and it was a delight working with him. He’s very calm and patient with his actors. I took acting seriously for the first time. I used to be worried that my face looked bad. He told me that I had the best skin tone for a cameraman to light. He also told me that I looked like an Italian model. I thought he was trying to make me feel better. But he really meant it.”
Dhanush’s Production House & The Inglorious Basterds Connection
In 2012, Dhanush launched his production venture Wunderbar Films, and bankrolled 3, directed by Aishwarya R. Dhanush. Have you wondered why the name Wunderbar? Here is the story behind it. “I went and saw Inglourious Basterds (Quentin Tarantino’s 2009 film) that morning, and they were saying ‘Wunderbar’ in the film. It’s a German word that means wonderful. Anirudh and I watched the film and we kept saying ‘Wunderbar’ for everything throughout the day. When I was editing that night, we named the production company ‘Wunderbar,’ just for fun. With 3, I wanted to launch my home production. People suggested different names for it, but I couldn’t part with ‘Wunderbar’ as I had gotten attached to it,” narrates Dhanush. Well, that’s a very Wunderbar story.
His love for Michael Madana Kama Rajan
In an interview with Baradhwaj Rangan, Dhanush asserted that comedy is the most difficult thing to do on-screen and when asked about his favourite comic performance of another actor, he talked about films of Nagesh, Goundamani, Rajinikanth, and Kamal Haasan. He also wondered how Kamal Haasan managed to crack Michael Madana Kama Rajan. “What work it was! You look back at the film and you just think about how he did it back then. It is close to impossible”, he said adding that he has big respect for people who can perform comedy.