In conversation with us, Saiju reveals that initially, he thought the character might be similar to Arakkal Abu from Aadu Oru Bheekara Jeeviyanu. Saiju says, “I thought Gunda Jayan might be a different shade of it, as the movie is touted to be a family entertainer with humour. But once I heard the story, I understood he is totally different. He is a 45-year-old, who can be termed a
bheekaran, and has the right attitude and temper of a goon. I haven’t done something like this before.”
Saiju remembers that when he was selected for Mayookham, director Hariharan had said something. “As my character had a very rough, anti-hero-like side to his personality and another, positive face too, Hariharan sir had said I can pull off both of these shades well. In Gunda Jayan too, I guess this aspect helped me get the role. On a lighter note, I am a very approachable actor as well and probably that’s why I was roped in,” observes Saiju.
What’s his takeaway as he hit a century? Saiju says, “It’s all the valuable experiences I had in the 99 movies that came before Upacharapoorvam Gunda Jayan.” And the actor says if all things fall into place, film production is something he wants to try, now. “If I save enough money, then I will get into it one day,” he hints.
The actor also reveals that on the sets of Gunda Jayan, he had quite a few surprises in store – in the form of wonderful debutant actors, who are power-packed performers! “They all came in through audition and the first day, I got a bit scared doing scenes with them – they were so natural! You experience it while working with experienced top actors but this was surprising. I guess from the second day onwards I managed to get the hang of it. But, one thing that’s for sure is that this film will bring forward many new good actors for the Malayalam industry,” the actor says, signing off.
The film’s story is by Arun Vaiga, who is also directing it. It is scripted by Rajesh Varma. Siju Wilson and Shabareesh Varma, Johny Antony, Gokulan, Sabu Mon, Hareesh Kanaran, Shani Shaki, Sudheer Karamana, Jaffer Idukki, Biju Sopanam, Vijilesh, Thatteem Mutteem fame Sagar Soorya, Vrinda Menon, Nayana and Parvathy also play major roles in the film, which has songs composed by Bijibal and penned by Harinarayanan. Eldo Isaac is on camera and Kiran Das does the editing of the film.