`My wife was in tears seeing me fighting Arya': John Kokken after playing `Vembuli' in `Sarpatta'

Thanks to Pa Ranjith's `Sarpatta Paramabarai'. John became popular after playing the role of Vembuli in `Sarpatta'. Since then, his phone has never stopped ringing.

By Bhavana Sharma  Published on  20 Sep 2021 10:59 AM GMT
`My wife was in tears seeing me fighting Arya: John Kokken after playing `Vembuli in `Sarpatta

It was a typical roller-coaster ride for John Kokken when he decided to try his luck in films in 2009. A youngster with a passion to make big in the movies took up all challenges with the hope that one day he will crack the puzzle.

Fast forward to 2021 and John has become quite a sensation. Thanks to Pa Ranjith's `Sarpatta Paramabarai'. John became popular after playing the role of Vembuli in `Sarpatta'. Since then, his phone has never stopped ringing.

Many offer him some meaty roles which he always dreamed of. If Tollywood comes calling, can Bollywood be far behind?

"I am glad for everything that came in my way with the release of Sarpatta. From praises that came from legendary actors to offers that were being showered, a lot of things have happened. I believe this is the best time of my career. After all the wait, hard work, and whatnot, I have finally tasted the first fruit of success. Thanks to director Pa Ranjit for believing in me, and making me believe that I can give my best to this role," says John during an exclusive interview with NewsMeter.


John has played key roles in Don Seenu, Teenmaar, Daruvu, Nenokkadine, Baahubali, Janatha Garage, and many other films. Not just in Telugu, but he has acted in other language films. But in most of the films, he played a baddie.

"I used to just stand behind the villain, sometimes run behind the hero to kill him, or probably do something similar in every film. I remember very well… I was asked to give an audition for a film. It happened for three long days and what they gave me was a one-day role. All these roles never gave me the chance to show my mettle. But I waited, and kept waiting," says John, who is quite busy nowadays and is laying stones to success.

In Sarpatta, John played Vembuli, the macho man with whom the lead actor Arya had to fight in the boxing ring. Right from the beginning of the film Vembuli is projected as the strongest person in the village. Not many understand that Vembuli is the actual hero of the film and then winning over him makes Kabilan also a hero.

John believes he is super lucky to have bagged the role of Vembuli. His wife Pooja Ramachandran visited the sets of the film and was in tears after seeing John fighting with Arya in the ring.


"Pooja was in tears after seeing Arya punch me hard with all the bruises. People may think that we were pretending in the ring as if we hit each other. But the fact is we both really punched each other hard and those bruises were real. Director Ranjith wanted this film, and the scenes to be as realistic as possible. So we took all the pains and fought really hard to bring that amazing film out," he says

The credit of the success of this film goes to the entire cast and crew, but the special mention goes to director Pa Ranjith. He cast some really amazing actors and they fit in really well in their roles.

"Ranjith wants nothing but perfection. He never compromised on anything. When he narrated the story to me, he told me clearly that I have to look like a boxer. I underwent rigorous training to become a boxer and even learnt the nuances of boxing. The physical transformation helped me a lot in my personal life as well and I am still following the same regime. Also, there was a day in the shoot where I fainted and was rushed to the hospital. So intense was the work," he says.


Everything has changed for John after the release of this intense sports drama. He made some really good friends on the sets. He calls Arya a man with a golden heart. Thala Ajith once advised John to never give up and keep working hard. He literally followed it and waited for two decades for this much-deserved break.

Talking about his wife Pooja, John says she is his strongest pillar of support. "She is a fitness freak and turned me also into one. Both of us belong to the same industry and so, she knows the challenges and understands really well. We both get very little time to spend together because of our busy schedules. However, we manage to spend quality time whenever possible," he says.

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