Come July 1, we would witness the story of ISRO Rocket scientist Nambi Narayanan unfold on our screens. Rocketry, which marks the directorial debut of Madhavan, stars the actor in the lead role.
In a recent media interaction to talk about his upcoming release, Madhavan spoke at lengths about what went behind the making of this unnerving story that changed his perception of life. “After the completion of Vikram Vedha, my friend suggested I make a movie based on real incidents that happened in the life of an ISRO scientist, who was falsely accused of revealing the National secret to the Pakistan army. However, he came out of a torturous experience in prison and finally proved his innocence,” said Madhavan, who added that he thought this would make a good James Bond-style film till the moment he met Nambi Narayanan in person.
“I would categorize my life as Madhavan before and after meeting Nambi Narayanan. I had known that he is one of the intelligent minds of India, but when I met him, I could see an adorable aura in him. His lips were shivering with anger and worries, which had lots to speak,” shared the actor, who urged the scientist to let bygones be bygones when the latter used to get angry recounting the injustice meted out to him. However, Nambi Narayanan pointed out the biggest problem when it comes to such labelling that happens to people like him. “Yes, it’s true that I have been proved innocent by court and police, but you Google my name and you’ll see ‘Spy’ tagged to it. My family has been branded in such a way, and it remains irreversible.”
It is this compelling argument that made Madhavan write the script of Rocketry. But such was the magnanimity of the scientist that it was only after the final draft was written that he spoke about his scientific achievements. When Madhavan asked him why these details weren’t told in the seven months that went into the scripting, Nambi said, “I didn’t do anything extraordinary. I just worked and got paid.” The actor-filmmaker revealed that this was a turning point in his life where he realised that there were two categories of patriotic people in the country — The one, who chants, glorifies, and spreads the essence of patriotism, and the unwritten and unknown heroes. “I wanted the Nation and world to know about the unheard epic life of people like Nambi Narayanan. It was disappointing to realise that many of us didn’t know that he was a Tamilian born in Nagercoil, and his contribution to the progress of the country was so immense but remained obscure to the public glare. So this is the reason behind my decision to make Rocketry.”
At the media interaction, Madhavan also shared a few pictures and footage of the physical transformation he had to undergo to become Nambi Narayanan. From realigning his teeth, to gaining a belly, and losing that weight in just 14 days, the footage received warm and genuine applause from the people present at the event.
Apart from writing and directing, Madhavan is also backing Rocketry along with Sarita Madhavan, Varghese Moolan, and Vijay Moolan. With Sam CS in charge of background score, Sirsha Ray and Bijith Bala have taken care of cinematography and editing, respectively.