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'Village lo Vinayakudu will be a visual feast'

Last updated on: November 4, 2009 15:21 IST

'Village lo Vinayakudu will be a visual feast'

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Radhika Rajamani in Hyderabad

Saikiran Adivi's (inset) very first Telugu project Vinayakudu won him two Nandi awards from the Andhra Pradesh Government for the Best Second film and Best Debut Director.

Now the filmmaker is ready with the sequel Village lo Vinayakudu with the same hero Krishnudu but another heroine Saranya Mohan (who hails from Kerala). The director is all charged up and does not seem nervous as his film (made on a modest budget) hits the turnstiles on November 5.

In this chat with rediff.com's Radhika Rajamani, he throws light on what the sequel to Vinayakudu is all about:

How did you react when Vinayakudu won the Nandi awards?

I was happy. I didn't anticipate anything from the public or the government though I was confident it would do well. My partner Mahi was sure Vinayakudu would win awards. If a fat man and a hot babe walk on the road, it grabs my attention. That's what I did in the film. (Vinayakudu was the love story of a fat man and a modern girl). I would call Vinayakudu a cross-commercial film. 

Why did you decide to make the sequel to Vinayakudu? Was it because of the success of Vinayakudu or did you have it in mind to make one?

It was Mahi (my business partner in Moonwater Pictures) who thought of doing the sequel Village lo Vinayakudu. He said, 'let's make it and produce it also'. Once we made Vinayakudu and it was a proven hit, we felt Karthik's character had potential. Mahi had the basic conflict point in mind and I worked further on the story.


Image: A scene from Village lo Vinayakudu

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'Vinayakudu and Village lo Vinayakudu are two differerent movies'

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Is there any continuity in the storyline or are Vinayakudu and Village lo Vinayakudu two different movies?

They are two different movies with the same protagonist -- something like the Munnabhai movies.

Village lo Vinayakudu, as evident from the title, is set in a rural backdrop, while Vinayakudu had an urban setting. Was it a conscious decision to do so?

For the first film, I wanted the urban setting. Then I wanted to attempt the other end of the same scale. Although in Village lo Vinayakudu the backdrop is rural, the characters are urban.

What is Village lo Vinayakudu about? Is it a love story?

It's a family entertainer with a love element. Vinayakudu was a love story.

You have chosen Krishnudu again in the sequel. How is his performance in the sequel?

He performed well in Vinayakudu. Even in the sequel, he did what I wanted. I can't imagine anyone else as that character. I wanted someone with an innocent face and a fat body and Krishnudu had both requirements.

For the sequel, you chose Saranya Mohan. Why her? Village Lo Vinayakudu is her Telugu debut...

Since the film is set in a village, I wanted a girl with a cute face who could carry the half-sari look well. I wanted her to look like a Telugu girl. I searched a lot. I went to Mumbai too and looked around but couldn't find anyone who fit the description.

In the meantime, Mahi got the photographs of Saranya and saw her in a song on TV. We finalised her but I still had my doubts. Once she started the shoot, however, I realised I got the right girl. Saranya is very professional. She was clear about what she was doing. She wrote her dialogues in Malayalam and checked the meaning of each word of the dialogues with me. She is basically a classical dancer. She has done a good job.


Image: A scene from Village lo Vinayakudu

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'Yendamoori Veerendranath is the surprise element'

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Could you talk about the rest of the cast?

Well-known writer Yendamoori Veerendranath is the surprise element. He has a full-fledged role and has done a good job.

How did you sign him?

I introduced myself and narrated the brief. He was convinced and accepted the role. He is such a big writer who has worked with big producers and production houses, yet was very co-operative. In fact when we wanted to buy his costumes he suggested we select them from his wardrobe itself!

Anybody else in the cast you would like to mention?

Rao Ramesh plays the heroine's father in the film.

How did you select Manikanth Kadri to score the music?

I liked his style and instrumentation in Avakkai Biryani. Since the film has a village backdrop (like Avakkai Biryani) I chose Manikanth Kadri.


Image: A scene from Village lo Vinayakudu

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'We priced the album at Rs 9.98 to combat piracy'

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What made you sell the audio at such a low price of less than Rs 10/-? Was it also a publicity gimmick?

We had made an appointment with an audio company. The person we were supposed to meet left before our appointment. He left a note for us to drop off the CD with the security guard. After thinking it through, we decided to promote the music on our own. Actually we priced it at Rs 9.98 to combat piracy.

Since Sridhar of Madhura Audio is a good friend, he released it. We packaged it well in terms of rate, content and some goodies (a free Reliance GSM Sim card with every album plus 1,00,000 lucky coupons sponsored by Kala Mandir and Reliance). We released 50,000 copies first and when all got sold out, we released another 1,00,000 copies.

You and your team did something innovative and imaginative by going on a tour to celebrate the success of the audio...

Nobody has attempted an audio success tour before. We realised what kind of expectation people had. When we began at Vizag, I was hesitant. The moment Krishnudu got out from the bus, I realised we were successful. It was Mahi's idea to do the tour. We toured Vizag, Rajahmundry, Vijayawada, Guntur, Nellore and Tirupati for four days. We had fixed up certain places like the theatres (where the film is releasing), Reliance stores and Future Generali (company) for Krishnudu to meet the public. The tour was successful and I am satisfied with the public's reaction.


Image: A scene from Village lo Vinayakudu

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'I don't make movies just to communicate'

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Where did you shoot the film?

We shot it around Dindi and Rajolu. In fact we also shot a portion at Krishnudu's house in Chintallapalli village near Rajolu. He was happy and so was the crowd. We put up a windmill on the banks of the river Godavari. This was a new attempt. I would say Village lo Vinayakudu will be a visual feast for the public.

How are you going to meet the expectations of the people since Vinayakudu was a hit?

The process of making the film was successful. I can confidently say that I have made a good film and done the best I could. Now it's upto the public.

Do you want to convey anything through the film?

I don't make movies just to communicate. If I believe in a subject, I make a movie to communicate it. I am a storyteller, a filmmaker.

Have you thought about your future project?

Once a film is completely taken off the theatres, I will think of the next one.


Image: A scene from Village lo Vinayakudu

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