Vijay Sethupathi, the Tamil actor who is currently set to appear in handful of films including Kamal Haasan‘s Vikram, is the host of the Tamil version of popular culinary show MasterChef. Speaking about hosting the show, Sethupathi said that the non-scripted television show gives him a chance to “connect with people directly”.
He was speaking at a press conference held on Monday at Innovative Film Academy, Bengaluru where he has been shooting for the show.
“When I did Namma Ooru Hero (2019), a reality show, I was afraid. After couple of episodes, however, I was comfortable. I can share my views with people directly. It is a beautiful experience to interact with people directly. At the same time, I have to be mindful of what I speak too,” the actor said.
The actor revealed that when he was initially approached to host MasterChef Tamil, he turned the offer down.
“I did not know how to do the show and said no. I know how to eat well, but not so much about cooking. However, it was Vignesh Shivan who suggested I look into the concept of the show. Later, I met producer Saravaan Prasad and we decided to present the show in our way, something that everyone can relate to. This show is not just about food (unavu) but also soul (ullam),” the actor said.
He added that all the participants of the show are home cooks who are passionate about cooking and want to learn more about the field and denied that any of them are celebrities. “We chose 23 participants, out of which 14 have been shortlisted. There are a lot of challenges here and the show is a mix of both international and local cuisine,” he added.
None of the contestants know acting, Sethupathi added. “We had called a guest celebrity to the show and wanted a surprise reaction from them. Later we had to shoot the surprise reaction from each of them separately. The contestants have developed a bond among themselves.”
Sethupathi said that he understood the importance of home-cooked food while he was staying abroad and missed his mother’s dishes. “I cook only a few simple dishes, while women around me cook well. MasterChef for me is my mother,” the actor said.
Speaking about the set of the show at Innovative Film City in Bengaluru, the actor said, “About three years ago, there was a fire accident here. Today, a grand set has been built for the show. When I first saw this, I could relate it to Shankar sir’s film sets.”
MasterChef, presented by Innovative Film Academy in association with Endemolshine, will be telecast on Sun TV every weekend, starting from August 1, 9.30 pm onwards.