Interview with Divya Unni

Do you come from a filmi family?

Not at all. My father Unnikrishnan is working in Cochin Shipyard and my mother is a teacher in Bharathiya Vidya Bhavan. I got my first break as a child artiste in Nee Ethra Dhanya when I was in the fourth standard. It was followed by Pookalam Varavayi directed by Kamal and Oh Faby by Srikuttan. I also did a TV serial directed by Vinayan. My first feature film was Sowgandhigam which I did when I was in the tenth standard. In fact, all these offers came as I am a trained classical dancer and had given many performances. I was given the Kalathilakam and Bhavans Jothi titles. This brought me into the notice of Kochi-based film directors and thus film offers came by.

Are you accepting films in Tamil because you have no films in Kerala?
(laughs) In fact, I was offered the heroine’s role in Suryavamsham and Unnedathil Ennay Koduthaen which I could not accept because of my exams. Pandu, the director of Kalvettu is a good friend of my father and it was because of him that I agreed to act in it. However, a film by C Sundar got released first. One thing led to another and today I have four films on the floor in Malayalam including a film each opposite Manoj K Jayan and Dilip.

It seems you have no qualms doing glamour roles in Tamil?
Why should I? Wearing glamourous dresses are a must in songs for Tamil films, but I will not be doing revealing roles. Just because Tamil producers are giving me more money does not mean that I will do anything. For me the role is very important, not the money. I want to be known as a good actress in Tamil and like Sridevi, want to combine glamour and acting.

Are you still studying for the fun of it?
I am doing my first year BA in St Theresa’s College, as I don’t want to miss out on the joys of campus life. All my friends are in college and it is there that I can let my hair down and relax. Moreover, my friends see me as just a friend and not as a film actress.

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