For the first time in Indian cinema, a real life urchin will be seen on the big screen playing a major role in a Tamil movie on beggary and child exploitation here.
Directed by eminent film director Vinayan, the film Naallai Nammathe meaning tomorrow belongs to us, is aimed to create awareness about the life, which the beggars and pavement dwellers have to live. It also highlights how mafia goons have a say in beggary and exploitation of families.
Film producer Jose Maveli spotted the nine-year-old Babu who was roaming and begging on the streets of Hyderabad (Andhra Pradesh). He was facing starvation and homelessness at that time. The boy was admitted to a hospital by a Kerala-based NGO.
He was taken to Seva Sang, a non-government organization in Trivandram (Kerala).
The boy was selected among several other orphans taken from the real life of streets. But he earned the major role because of his boldness and acting skills before camera.
With time Babu has exuded commendable confidence. He has shown no traits of shyness before the camera or the bright lights reflected with huge mirrors.
"This movie is for street dwellers who are not taken care of by the public and the government. As Indians we should save the life of these innocent people and help their future," said Jose Maveli, producer of Naallai Nammathe.
Director Vinayan said that he appreciated these versatile qualities in Babu and decided to give him the lead role. And on his part, the boy has not disappointed either the producer or the director.
"Mr. Jose Maveli introduced me to this child and I asked him to do the scene of an orphan. He laughed and said that he had no mother and father and that his plight was the same. I noticed his courage and appreciated him for that. I asked him to act," said Vinayan, the film director.
The movie is being shot in Tamil language for now, but later, it will be dubbed in other South Indian languages.
Produced at a cost of rupees 2.5 crores, Naallai Nammathe is likely to be released around the New Year.