Interview: Rohini Molleti — the happening mother of South cinema

The actor talks about parenthood, her characters in recent releases, the young generation of directors and writers, and a lot more.

ByY Sunita

Published Feb 04, 2023 | 11:25 AMUpdated Feb 04, 2023 | 12:42 PM

rohini molleti

On 3 February, we saw Rohini Molleti in Writer Padmabhushan movie as a television-obsessed mother who has a knack for predicting the twists and turns in soap operas.

The ever-smiling Rohini honestly declares that, in real life, she doesn’t watch serials and also doesn’t have the time. Having said that, she speaks objectively: “I guess the scene is changing now and I hope the nature of the content will be good.”

The actor is confident that the story will entertain the audience as it is so relatable. In most families, we see a child wanting to do something and the parents expect him or her to pick an IT job.

rohini writer padmabhushan

Suhas, Ashish Vidyarthi and Rohini in ‘Writer Padmabhushan’. (Rohinimolleti/Twitter)

“In my case, my son was in seventh standard when he asked me if I would be disappointed if he became a chef. By the time he reached the 10th standard, he wanted to be a doctor,” Rohini recalled.

“He stood first in school and wanted to take up medicine. It was his choice. He did his pre-medicine and is now into research,” she added, with a hint of pride in her eyes.

Coming back to children, there is also peer pressure and a certain pressure from school on those who study well.

“There will be well-wishers who will give a lot of advice but we need to know what he or she wants and encourage him, not limit their growth,” she said.

Also Read: Writer Padmabhushan review

Her character in Writer Padmabhushan or that of Ashish Vidyarthi is something very common. As parents, they are worried about what people would comment about their children.

“We have to see where this validation is coming from. Living life to our satisfaction is what matters. The children, too, are worried and they do think about how long the parents have to support them, though they don’t express it. We shouldn’t worry about them further. After all, not that all turn out to be someone famous,” she pointed out.

Writer Padmabhushan begins with what we need to give a child. This forms the base of the story and the same has been told hilariously.

“The son is a normal personality and the mother, as usual, supports the prospective writer in him. What happens in the process is interesting. The twists and turns make a great watch,” the actor explained.

On OTT and Gen Z writers

About the emergence of young directors during the pandemic, Rohini concurs she couldn’t have been happier. She cites there is so much talent, be it writers or directors of DJ Tillu, Colour Photo, Shyam Singha Roy, Ante Sundaraniki, etc.

She is fortunate to see this phase and understands that these new-generation directors are willing to step out of their comfort zone and weave commercial cinema with solid content in a stipulated budget.

Also Read: Michael review

“These stories are not just based on the hero but also the other characters who lead the story. The OTT has ushered in a good trend. We have arrived at a place where there are films from all states. When we see a good story in another language, we too get inspired to give something better than that,” she observed.

“All this happens in world cinema but there was a little doubt if it would run in the theatres here. There are some prerequisites and some films are meeting that criterion. The so-called commercial subjects are being tweaked or rewritten to appeal to a large segment.”

On her recent releases

The actor is also a writer, and lyricist, and does extensive work in theatre. Her films in Telugu and Tamil are ready to hit the floors.

She couldn’t hold her excitement on the Tamil film Beginning, directed by Jagan Vijaya, which hit the screens on Republic Day (26 January).

rohini on sets

Actor Rohini Molleti. (Rohinimolleti/Twitter)

It is Asia’s first split-screen movie, “Two stories are running in two places in two frames. It revolves around a spastic child. I played a single mother. It is about what happens to him when I am not at home and how he is trying to get in touch with me.”

While the story goes on in one frame, the repercussions, and reactions take place in the other frame. The two stories merge towards the end.

Similarly, Witness is something movie buffs are proud of. It began streaming last December and the Tamil story deals with the horrors of manual scavenging.

“It is about how I take up the struggle and go to court. The visuals are not repulsive and the filmmakers ensured there is no shock value. It has started a dialogue and I am happy to be a part of such a project,” she signed off.

Also Read: Witness review