Dharmanna on ‘Man of The Match’: ‘The reel and real collide’


The actor says the characters take a dig at each other’s roles and performances from their previous films

The actor says the characters take a dig at each other’s roles and performances from their previous films

Dharmanna Kadur became a household name with D Sathya Prakash’s Rama Rama Re, where he plays Dharma, who is on the run with his sweetheart, Subbi. With Subbi’s family in pursuit, the couple end up in a jeep with a serial killer, played by Nataraj Bhat. Dharmanna won hearts with his timing, body language and dialogue delivery.

Dharmanna returns with the Kannada film Man of the Match. Directed by Sathya Prakash, the film, which has nothing to do with cricket, also features Nataraj, Keshava Jayaram, Mayuri Nataraj and Veena Sundar.

Dharmanna, who has also acted in Striker, Kaanadante Maayavadanu and Kannad Gothilla, says he plays a film producer in Man of the Match. “The character is like me. Nata (Nataraj) plays an actor who turns director and auditions actors for his films. I come on board as a producer. We take digs at each other’s acting styles mentioning the number of retakes we needed in our earlier films. The line between the real and reel blurs in the film.”

Dharmanna in a still from the film

A theatre actor, with a passion for comedy, Dharmanna says apart from comedy, Man of the Match also has a romance, action and emotions. He credits director Sathya Prakash for weaving all the elements brilliantly.

Dharmanna, Sathya Prakash and Nataraj were classmates who worked in theatre for almost eight years. “We travelled all over Karnataka staging plays. Then, each of us went our separate ways following our dreams. When we reconnected, we realised that we shared a common love for cinema. We got together for Daali Dhananjaya’s short film, Jayanagara 4th Block .

The film went viral when it was released on YouTube in 2013. The screenplay was jointly written by Dhananjaya, Sathya Prakash and Nataraj. With Jayanagara 4th Block Dhananjaya, Nataraj, Dharmanna and Bimbashree Ninasam debuted as actors and Sathya Prakash as a director.

“Our journey began at that point. Jayanagara 4th Block became the foundation for Rama Rama Re.” Other films in the pipeline include a comedy, Sugarless, a thriller, I Am Pregnant, Kranti with Darshan and Garudi with Yograj Bhat.

Humour should not be cheap, says Dharmanna. “I still remember films featuring Anant Nag and Shashi Kumar such as Gowri Ganesha and Policina Hendathi, which made us laugh. They were clean comedies that the entire family could enjoy. I love situational comedy and always will be game for this genre.”

Dharmanna says while he is open to roles in other genres, comedy will always hold a special place for him. “Comedy with emotion is something that touches every heart.”

Man of the Match will stream on Amazon Prime Video from May 5

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