Actor Ram is back with Kandireega
The young hero Ram took a break after his last film Rama Rama Krishna Krishna, which received a tepid response, and listened to umpteen scripts before zeroing in on debutante director Santosh Srinivas's Kandireega, which releases on August 12.
In this interview, Ram outlines what Kandireega is about, the long hiatus between films, and the films he is doing with Karunakaran and Gautham Menon.
You seem to be looking out for new directors of late. Ganesh with Saravanan and now Kandireega with Santosh Srinivas.
To be honest, I used to think I shouldn't work with new directors. I was keen on big directors, but things kept getting cancelled. I kept listening to scripts. The way Santosh Srinivas narrated this script blew me off. He was a cameraman and knew shot division.
Is Kandireega a love triangle?It's not a love triangle. It's an action entertainer.
'Hero is the villian in Kandireega'
How different is this action entertainer?
Every film follows a pattern. Director Santosh broke each and every pattern. It's a lot hatke. The hero is the villain. It's as engaging as Ready but has nothing to do with Ready. That's what Santosh told me. After Ready, I got many scripts that the directors said were like Ready. It's only Santosh Srinivas who said that his film has nothing to do with Ready.
What role do you play in Kandireega?
I play a mean guy who is easygoing and has a comic touch. Actually it's a bit difficult to reveal without letting out the story.
You are a great dancer. In each of your films there's a concept behind the dances. What's new in Kandireega?
Dances are a major USP. I keep trying to do something different. I believe in pleasure rather than pressure.
This is your second film with Hansika after Maska.
Three years ago, when I acted with her in Maska, she was a kid. Now she has grown up and is mature.
'Aksha will be a revelation in the film'
Aksha is the other heroine in the film and Swati does a cameo...
Aksha's role is more performance oriented. She'll be a revelation in this film. Swati did a scene and is part of a song. She's a Telugu girl and therefore easier to talk to.
How was Santosh Srinivas as a director?
We used to call him Vasu and now we call him Masu (as he's got the mass touch). It didn't seem like this was his debut film because he has such clarity. In that respect he's on par with big directors.
This film is produced by Bellamkonda Suresh, one of the more successful producers.
He did spend a lot of money and gave us all we wanted. He didn't interfere on the sets.
How was it acting opposite Sonu Sood?Sonu Sood plays an interesting character. People will start sympathising with him. He's a true professional, very interested in his work. Sonu is one of the best I have worked with.
Image: A still from Kandireega
'I was disappointed with Rama Rama Krishna Krishna'
Are you hoping Kandireega will do well?
I hope all my films do well. I worked extra hard, day and night. I took a lot of time before selecting this script, rejecting many others. People will be waiting to see what I selected.
Were you unhappy with Rama Rama Krishna Krishna?
It was a disappointment. The collections were good in some areas in spite of the hurricane that struck at the time, and the exhibitors were happy. But I was disappointed overall because the script was changed. I was forced to hold a knife in my hand and forced to do what I was against doing. So I stopped doing any film for seven months.
It's the same cycle that happened after Jagadam. I took months off and listened to about 70 scripts before selecting Ready and there was a 15-month time lag for release. Similarly, after Rama Rama Krishna Krishna, I took off for seven months and heard roughly around 70 scripts and I am having a release after 15 months.
You seem to have films with Karunakaran and Gautham Menon now
I will be shooting Endukanthe Premanta (Karunakaran's film) and the Gautham Menon-A R Rahman film back to back. Gautham's film will be made in Telugu. Both are love stories never tried before.
Image: A still from Kandireega