Tamil News

Dhanush: “My Father And Brother Moulded Me Like Raw Iron”

Dhanush, Caravan

On the heels of his latest Tamil release VIP 2, Dhanush talks to IANS about how he began acting, his family’s influence on the actor he finally became, and spreading positivity, love, and hope through cinema.


Dhanush said that at 16, he was forced into acting by his father. He said, “I was not qualified to be an actor and my heart was into so many other things. I never expected I could come this far. It does surprise me.”

Dhanush made his acting debut with the 2002 Tamil film Thulluvatho Ilamai, directed by his father Kasthuri Raja.

His second film, Kadhal Kondein, which released a year later, was directed by his brother Selvaraghavan.

“I was like raw iron. My father and my brother moulded me and I still don’t know what they identified in me which I couldn’t figure out myself. People who identify their calling are lucky. In my case, I consider myself blessed because my calling identified me,” Dhanush said.

Dhanush has since evolved not just as an actor but also as a writer, singer, and director. Coming from a family of writers and directors, he said it was natural for him to take to writing.

“I have been writing for over a decade but initially most of my work was immature. I learnt the craft as I started working with different directors. It was in 2010-11 that I took writing seriously and focused on full-length scripts, screenplays, and dialogues,” he said.

Dhanush’s passion for writing eventually paved the way for him to direct Power Paandi, which released earlier this year.

He said he draws a lot of inspiration from real-life events while writing.

“Most scenes in the first part of VIP were based on events which I saw and read about. I like the kind of writing that’s easily relatable and emotionally rooted. That’s something which easily connects with the masses. I also like to spread positivity and love through my writing in my films,” he said.

Asked who inspires him as a writer, Dhanush said: “I’m a huge fan of Rajkumar Hirani. His films send out so much positivity. It makes us believe life is positive and full of hope. Maybe that’s why you don’t find villains in his movies. The world needs positivity and Rajuji is doing his bit by spreading it through his movies.”


Responding to the mixed reaction from critics to VIP 2, Dhanush said, “Power Paandi received rousing response from critics and audiences alike. When I could accept it, I should also have the maturity to accept the mixed reactions for VIP 2. The critics can be right sometimes and the audiences can also be right on some occasions. We need to learn to accept both.”

In 2013, Dhanush made his Hindi debut with Rai’s Raanjhanaa, which even earned him the Filmfare award for Best Debut. 

Talking about his Bollywood sojourn, Dhanush said: “I don’t plan my career….I let things fall in place and then do it with all my heart. You should meet the right people at the right time. That’s how Bollywood happened.”

Asked about his Hollywood film The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir, he said, “I had turned down three Hollywood projects before this one. I was floored by the script of this film. I play a street-magician, and it’s another film that spreads a lot of positivity.”