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Interview with Superstar Krishna by Jeevi

: 30th May 2002 Venue: Padmalaya Studios
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Arunima Roy (Producer)
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Sirivennela Seeta Rama Sastry (Lyric Writer)
D Suresh Babu (Producer)
Mahesh Babu (Hero)
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Sravanthi Ravi Kishore (Producer)
RP Patnaik (Music Director)
Smita (Telugu pop singer)
Shyam (Producer)
Karunakaran (Director)
Sri (Music Director)
Gudipoodi Srihari(Film Critic)
SJ Surya(Director)
AM Ratnam(Producer)
Tammareddy Bharadwaja(Producer n Director)
Jayant C Paranji(Director)
Kodi Rama Krishna(Director)
Chakri (JD Chakravarthy)(Hero)
Ramana Gogula(Music Director)
Naga Babu(Producer n Actor) had a tête-à-tête with Superstar Krishna on 30 May 2002 at his magnificent office in the majestic Padmalaya Studios on the eve of his 60th birthday, which falls on the 31st May. He was kind enough to oblige us with an interview on a very short notice. Here are the excepts of the interview -


What are the films you liked watching when you were a kid?

The first film I watched as a kid was NTR's Pathala Bhairavi. I saw that film in Tenali when I was six years old. I became an instant fan of Rama Rao garu with that film. Since, then I started watching films regularly. I watched almost all the films that were released at that time. It gradually became a habit for me to watch all the films irrespective of the artists that starred in those films.

When did you get the idea of entering films?

I did my high school in Tenali and college in Eluru. When I was a student, I never missed an opportunity to see the artists that visited the place I was studying at. I was so glad to see Nageswara Rao garu in person when he came to Tenali on the eve of 100 days celebrations of Devadas and Todi Kodallu. I took his autograph, when he came to Eluru for the 100 days function of Illarikam. My college management had also organized a function to felicitate Nageswara Rao garu for his contribution to the cine field. That function inspired me and that's when I decided to enter Telugu film industry as a hero and scale the heights of mighty stars. After entering the film industry, I think I have achieved what I wanted to.

Did anybody encourage you from your childhood days to become a hero?

I never expressed my desire to become a hero when I was a student. After completing my education (at the age of 19-20), I met NT Rama Rao garu and Chakrapani garu for guidance. They felt that I was looking very tender (noonugu meesalu) at that age. They told me that it's too early to try as a hero. Since I came to the industry immediately after completing my education, they wanted me to gain some experience as an artist by participating in some stage plays. They advised me to gain some dramatic experience. I acted in a play (naatakam) titled Chesina Papam Kaasiki Velluna? along with Sobhan Babu garu in the direction of Kodali Gopal Rao garu in Madras. After that I acted in Praja Natya Mandali's play Chairman in the direction of Dr. Raja Rao.

When Babu Movies made an announcement that they were looking for new artists, I sent my photographs. They called for a screen test and selected me as the hero.

Which film helped you to get a major fan base in your initial days as hero?

My third film Gudachari helped me garner an enormous mass fan base. It was the first James Bond movie on Indian screen and it left the audience enthralled. Numerous Krishna Fans Associations started springing up after the release of Gudachari.

You have come up with the genres of James Bond and Cowboy films in Telugu. What inspired you to try different roles like that?

Gudachari was an ambitious project by Doondy garu. I just followed the instructions of the director and acted in it. There was no involvement from my side in terms of story preparation etc. But coming to cowboy films, I happened to see movies like Mackenna's Gold and The Good, The Bad and The Ugly at that time which impressed me very much. Those films inspired me to make Mosagallaku Mosagadu on my own banner. Also, I wanted to offer something new to the Telugu audience.

When did you get an award for the first time?

I did not get any award so far.

Why did you not get any award?

I don't know. The adjudicators should know why I did not get any awards.

Did you ever feel sad that you did not get any award so far?

When Jyoti Chitra was the number one magazine, they conducted a superstar poll. For five consecutive years I won the 'Superstar' title. They then stopped conducting the poll, as there was no point in conducting it every year if only one person was getting the title each year. That shows the verdict of people. The verdict of the audience is an invaluable reward and is better than any award. Sitara magazine also declared me as the best actor for one year.

How do you take the criticism on your films?

I am very sportive when it comes to criticism.

Most of the artists reach a saturation point at one age and decide to quit films. You seem to be quite interested in doing more films even at this age. What do you have to say about this?

I never came across any saturation point. I want to act in films as long as I live.

How are you able to manage such cordial relations with your fans?

From the beginning of my career, I treated my fans as my own brothers. And at the same time I am lucky to have such affectionate fans.

Did you have the habit of celebrating birthdays before you entered films?

No, I don't like celebrating my birthdays. But after entering films, I started celebrating birthdays to satisfy my fans. I don't want to disappoint my fans. From the beginning of my career, my fans always visited me wherever I was, on my birthday. When I was living in Madras, I used to visit Ooty during this time of the year. And that's how I celebrated most of my birthdays in Ooty. My fans somehow always manage to gather the information about my whereabouts to come see me and celebrate my birthday.

Mahesh Babu made a grand entry into Tollywood with a perfect mass film Raja Kumarudu. But he could not live up to the expectations later. Can we expect more mass films from Mahesh?

His present two films [Okkadu (Bhoomika Chawla, Gunasekhar) and Bobby (Arti Agarwal, Sobhan Babu)] are very good films. Both these films will exceed the expectations of audience.

How did you feel after watching Takkari Donga?

Mahesh took a lot of risk in that film for executing those amazing fight sequences. Whatever the film paid off commercially is solely because of Mahesh Babu's presence. He is the only asset of Takkari Donga.

Mahesh Babu has shown tremendous maturity in histrionics in just four films. How do you feel about it as a father and a senior artist?

He definitely has improved a lot with just four films. He is more matured than what I expected. Mahesh Babu is the only hero who got such a rousing reception for his debut film from the audience.

What are your future projects?

I would be directing a Hindi film under Padmalaya banner soon.

Is it a remake of Manasanta Nuvve?

No. Somebody else has already copied the storyline of Manasanta Nuvve. I would be directing some other film.

Do you have any words for the visitors of

I visited USA a couple of years back. Whichever city I went to in the US, I found that 80% of Telugu people out there were my fans. I even met some people who had the videocassettes of 300 films out of the 320 films I acted in. I was so happy and proud after meeting them. I would like to convey my best wishes to them and to all my other fans through

Interviewed by Jeevi
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