Actor Allu Sirish has started shooting for upcoming Malayalam war drama “1971: Beyond Borders”, which focuses on the tank battle between India and Pakistan. He says it’s an honour to be part of a film on history.

Directed by Major Ravi, the film also stars Malayalam superstar Mohanlal.

“I’m very patriotic, and it’s one of the reasons why I was chosen for the role. I like wearing my patriotic tag on my sleeve. When Ravi sir offered me the role, I thought it would be an honour to be part of a film on our history,” Sirish told IANS.

Recalling how he landed the offer, Sirish said an accidental meeting with director Ravi did the trick.

“He was in Hyderabad to meet someone else. We accidentally met and I started talking to him about his films, about partition and history. He felt I was more patriotic and he was very keen on having like-minded people on his project. He wanted someone who believed in the film, in his vision, and he saw that in me,” he said.

In the film, Sirish plays a tank commander, and he has already started shooting in Arjungarh army base in Rajasthan.

Asked if he being patriotic was enough to play his part, Sirish said: “Ravi was on the lookout for someone who was physically strong but at the same time vulnerable. He wanted a young guy with brashness, and he wanted him to take crazy risks. He saw these things in me and that’s how I landed the role.”

Although Ravi had initially planned to cast someone older and even more familiar, he felt the character won’t be justified.

The film marks Sirish’s Malayalam debut. And he isn’t nervous.

“I’m excited,” said Sirish in an affirmative tone.

“I’ve always been numb towards success and failure. When my first film tanked, I didn’t feel depressed. When my last film turned out to be a hit, I wasn’t super elated. More than getting worked up about something, I like to be prepared. Preparation helps more than nervousness,” he said and added that challenges excite him.

Sirish will use this opportunity to learn from Mohanlal, with whom he will share screen space.

“It’s a big break for me to act alongside Mohanlal sir in my first Malayalam film. I hope to learn from him as much as possible. I’m sure it’s going to be a great learning experience,” he said.

Other things he hopes to pick by working in Malayalam industry is the different kind of acting style.

“You can find a lot of realism in the performances in Malayalam films. In Tamil and Telugu industries, it’s got more to do with a theatrical kind of performance style,” he added.

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