Dhanush – the star for the underdog.

You have neither the physique of an action hero nor the looks of a chocolate lover boy. You have the potential to be a fine actor who would eventually win a National Award but that is not a priority in the scheme of things of a commercial, pot boiler producing film industry.

Voila – so you play the counter game. You are the voice of the underdog who finds it tough in life but eventually wins his lady and success whatever may be its definition. You can surely achieve mass following by following the mantra.

As we celebrate Dhanush’s 25th movie and 12 years in Tamil cinema with many awards under his best including the National Award for Aadukalam and of course the overnight craze of You Tube of his first single ever, ‘Why this Kolaveri di?’, it is a good question to wonder whether he should transition to a next level in his career. There have been many films by him now that remind you of having been there and done that. So it could be time to try something new.

In the initial phase we saw Dhanush play to the T the role of the underdog. He would portray the role of a typical ‘loser’ who is scorned by his family and friends, struggling to get hold of a good job, facing communication issues and mostly struggling to be the ‘ideal’ person in his set-up. The best of this lot included Kadhal Kondein,Thiruda Thirudi and Devathai Kanden.

He then moved on to action backed roles – again an extension of his earlier profile – in Pudhupettai and Polladhavan. He also did a ‘one-off’ off beat movie with Balu Mahendra – ‘Adhu Oru Kana Kaalam’ (Shades of Balu Mahendra’s vintage classic Malayalam movie – Yathra).

And then he did a perfect movie in the National Award Winner – Aadukalam helmed by Vetrimaran. Set in Madurai and dealing with the story of rooster fights, it is a story of yet another undergo hero being betrayed by his own mentor and how he protected his reputation. Dhanush was back in his element of launch pad as he tries to woo an Anglo-Indian girl, Irene (essayed by Taapsee Pannu). Indeed it is the fun element in the sober movie and one can suspend ones disbelief to find the couple fall in love in a fairly credible narrative.

Post this there has not been much that has caught ones attention in Tamil Cinema – he did have a spectacular launch in Bollywood through Raanjhanaa.

Recently his 25th film in Tamil was released – VIP. It was again vintage Dhanush and one could predict the storyline with ease. Even Vivek did something different in this movie by underplaying himself and avoiding his voluble satirical commentary. Just a timely reminder that we would love to watch Dhanush attempt something different now. It is time to take his profile to a new level.

Photographer:The India Today Group / Contributor Collection:The India Today Group Credit:India Today Group/Getty Images
Photographer:The India Today Group / Contributor
Collection:The India Today Group
Credit:India Today Group/Getty Images
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