Aishwarya Rajesh’s next, titled Valaiyam, helmed by debut director Mano Bharathi, went on floors on Saturday. The film, backed by G Dilli Babu’s Axess Film Factory, also introduces actor Dev in a lead role. 

Shedding light on the film’s genre and plot, director Mano Bharathi says, “The film is a female-oriented action thriller. Aishwarya Rajesh plays a village girl who comes to Chennai to take an examination. During her visit, she becomes a witness to a crime, and because of this, she faces certain consequences. How she takes the help of her friend, a rookie cop, to come out of the situation forms the crux of the story.” Dev is set to essay the role of the buddy cop. 

Mano says that Valaiyam is not like the usual female-oriented films. “The film’s crime is set in the night backdrop, and the film will feature Aishwarya performing stunt sequences,” he shares further adding why Aishwarya was his choice for the role, “I chose Aishwarya Rajesh because I wanted my lead to represent someone from the South side of Tamil Nadu.” 

When asked about Dev’s casting, the director explains, “I needed an innocent face for the role of the police officer, but at the same time, I didn’t want the conventional actors who always play such roles. I chose a debutant because the audience will have no idea about his background.”

Chethan, Tamizh, Pradeep Rudra, Hareesh Peradi, and Suresh Menon round out the cast of Valaiyam. Mano says that the film is being planned to be shot in and around Chennai. “Only one small village portion needs to be filmed outside the city. Further, we have only planned a single schedule of 40 days for the shoot,” he adds. 

Valaiyam has cinematography by M Henry, an erstwhile assistant of Velraj, editing by Bhoopathy, of Oh My Kadavule fame and music by Lift-fame Michael Britto. The makers plan to release the film in the latter half of this year.