Abhinaya is a beautiful teenager. When one looks at her, one wouldn't know that she is a special child, a differently-abled one. Though unable to hear and speak, Abhinaya emotes well. She is one of the actors of the Tamil film Nadodigal.
"When she would see the film hoardings, she would want to be there," says her father Anand, an ex-serviceman now a character artiste in Telugu films.
Abhinaya went on to model for Reddy Labs, GMR, Ohri's to name a few (in Hyderabad). She showed all the trappings of being a 'star' since the age of three.
A self-taught dancer and a fitness freak (does yoga), Abhinaya is also a great movie buff who loved Black and the Tamil film Mozhi. "She has mastered the laptop on her own and always wants to keep herself busy," add her parents who have been the motivating force behind Abhinaya.
With some help from her parents, Radhika Rajamani gleaned Abhinaya's experience of Nadodigal.
'Samudirakkani told my father that he wanted me for the film'
How did you sign Nadodigal? It is said that a heroine walked out because the director didn't understand English.
My father was shooting for a GMR ad in Shamshabad. I was also there in the ad though I was not present on the day the people from the Kerala ad agency came to the airport when they knew that an ad shoot was happening. They were probably on the lookout for fresh faces and possibly thought they could find somebody on the spot. They came to the coordinator. After they finished with the coordinator, my father gave them my pictures. They told him I was young and they were looking for an older person and went away.
The director of Nadodigal Samudirakkani went to Kerala for a talent search and went to the same ad agency. When he was going through their albums, he found one of my pictures there and he asked them for it. When the agency refused to give it, he clicked my picture on his mobile camera with my father's mobile number and then called my father. Samudirakkani (director of television serials Selvi, Arasi and who acted in the Tamil film Subramaniapuram) told my father that he was planning a movie and that he wanted me to enact a character. My father told him about my deficiency, but Samudirakkani said he had heard about it and that it was his problem. He called for a photo-shoot in September, 2008. As soon as he saw the photographs he confirmed that I would be in the film.
Regarding the heroine walking out, I was told about it by the director at a press meet. I didn't know about it before.
'Acting is easy'
You are differently-abled. How was it being an actor?
Acting is easy. I used to go with my Dad for his shoots. My parents wanted me to be an ad model as no dialogues and only expression is required. I was given simple dialogues and my mother would explain to me. It was easy to enact it out.
What do you play in the film?
I play the hero's sister. I'm paired opposite Vijay (of Chennai 28 fame).
The film is said to be the story of four men and three women
There is no single hero or heroine, the movie revolves around seven people.
How was the experience of acting in the film?
It was a good experience. I learnt a lot. I was emotional when I had to do the sentimental scenes.
'I would definitely like to act in more films'
How was it interacting with other co-artistes like Sasi Kumar, Ananya and others?
We were like a family. We used to spend the evening in the hotel together.
How about the experience of working with Samudirakkani?
He is like a friend. He helped me a lot. He doesn't get angry. He ensured I had a good time.
Would you like to act in more films? If so, what kinds of roles?
Yes, I would definitely like to act in more films. I would like to do different roles.