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Interview with Vijaya Bhaskar
Date: April 19, 2007, Hyderabad
K Vijaya Bhaskar

K Vijaya Bhaskar, the director with sensible feelings is all set to release his latest film Classmates on April 20.Classmates is a remake of huge Malayalam blockbuster and met him at his residence a day before the release. Excerpts from an interview:

What went wrong with Jai Chiranjeeva?
Jai Chiranjeeva was destined to go down from the beginning itself. The project got delayed by an year after finalizing script. Hence, whatever we wanted to make underwent conceptual changes. we starting shooting the film with climax episode in USA. I usually shoot the film in scenic order of the film, so that I develop good chemistry with the protagonist as the film moves on. I missed that in Jai Chiranjeeva as we shot climax at the first stage. The film was supposed to be a commercial film with lot of sensibility, but somewhere during the shooting I stepped in to the wrong direction. However, it was not such a bad film as it was projected, but I had a wonderful experience working with an actor like Chiranjeevi. He is an absolute professional.

Tell us about Classmates?
After Jai Chiranjeeva, my next project was supposed to be with Ram as a hero in Sravanthi banner. Myself and Sravanthi Ravi Kishore have been to Cochin scouting for the locations and happened watch Malayalam film Classmates, that was released four days back in Kerala. Both of us liked the concept of the film and felt that the new story line should be introduced to the Telugu audience. After coming back, we spoke to Ram and then worked on Classmates script. We changed the screenplay a bit to suit the sensibilities of Telugu audience. Classmates is a heart warming and realistic film, but has loads of entertainment. It provides us a nostalgic feel and it was an energetic experience to make such kind of film. I am satisfied with my work as it gave lot of scope for creativity.

Casting: This storyline demanded actors who look appropriate in a role that spans over 10 years. Sumanth, Sada and Kamalinee are very appropriate and also introduced many new actors. I was amazed at Sumanth's performance as I never expected him to deliver such a fine histrionics. You would not see the actor in that film but the character. Both Sada and Kamalinee once again proved how wonderful actresses they are. Sharwanand did a lovable character and it will surely change his image. Ravi Varma will surprise you in a role that is opposite of the hero. Sunil's comedy will be one of the highlights of the film.

Technical departments: Music plays an important role in this film. The movie starts in the present year and then goes back to 1996 (10 years). We have taken special precautions in music, camera and costumes departments to make sure that the variation of 10-years gap is reflected in the film. Koti and Hari Anumolu did special care in enhancing the mood of the film. Sirivennela's lyrics are touching with lot of intensity. Choreography of the songs will be slow yet challenging. Dialogue writer Abburi Ravi wrote crisp and meaningful dialogues. Producer Sravanthi Ravi Kishore is the kind of producer who loves the process of making films. This is my 3rd film with him.

You delivered all your successes with Trivikram as writer. For the first time, you are working with a different writer Abburi Ravi. How different are they?
You can't compare them. Both are wonderful writers. Abburi Ravi penned crisp and meaningful dialogues. I want audience to tell me how different Abburi Ravi compared to Trivikram after watching the films. More over all the films I worked with Trivikram are basic entertainers with lot of comedy. This is a different project.

Tell us about your next project with Vishnu as hero?
The title of the film is 'Romeo Juliet' with the caption 'Thodu Dongalu'. The film will be a commercial entertainer with action-based comedy, with a good twist in climax. The script of the film is going to be hero, just like all my earlier films. Vishnu will get a lot of scope to perform all kinds of shades. Mani Sharma started scoring music. Mohan Babu will produce the film on Sri Lakshmi Prasanna Pictures banner. This film will be launched very soon.

Genelia seems to be doing good in films these days. What are your observations on her as you introduced her to film industry with Hindi version of Nuvve Kavali?
Her parents were reluctant when we approached Genelia to cast in our film. We assured them that we are making a clean film. There is some sweetness about Genelia. I told her that she need not have act in the film and just be herself in the character. It is nice to see that she is selecting good films.

On a personal note, I always wanted to work with Telugu speaking girls, but unfortunately we are not getting any Telugu girls entering in to the film industry. We don't have a Telugu heroine in Telugu film industry after Laya.

Click here to know more about Vijaya Bhaskar

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