formation of story:
movie or a book doesn't inspire me. Real life incidents do
inspire me. There are certain people who drink beyond their
capabilities and start doing nonsensical things, which they
do not remember when they get up the next day. If alcohol
could have such an impact, what would be the effect of drugs?
You would not remember the next day what happened when you
were drugged. This formed the basic story idea. This film
is about the things a girl did after she was drugged.
wanted to give the color of drug mafia to the entire film
till I saw a few Swamijis. There are two types of Swamijis.
One kind of Swamijis cheats people for money. There are some
other kind of mad Swamijis who do believe that the mad things
they do are miracles. I observed a Swamiji from a major city
in AP who offers water from drainage to the devotees and make
them drink. Another Swamiji from an AP village has far dangerous
way of functioning. He would be roaming nude and there are
numerous worshippers to him who are willing to do whatever
he orders. All he does is nonsense and all those followers
blindly believe him. I saw him doing unspeakable things (homo
sex) in public, and the devotees and public from neighborhood
believe that it is a 'leela' of Swamiji. I saw another episode
in TV9 where a cross-dressing Swamiji who do nonsensical things.
You might have heard about the mass suicide by 900 cult people
in west. I have also read a book called 'World Famous Cults'
to know more about them. All these incidents inspired in writing
the cult people climax in the film.
find drugs and cult culture similar. Both these things have
heavy influence on mind. In fact, Cult culture is more dangerous
than drugs. I mixed these two ingredients to make Anukokunda
My initial choice was Genelia. She liked the story and did
not have dates for the period we mentioned. We wanted to cast
Bhumika Chawla later. But she did not give us a hearing. Then
we wanted to cast new faces. We did not get the right girl.
Then we saw a program of Charmy in TV and found her to speak
nice Telugu. We fixed on her and she made us proud with her
work in this film. She is very enthusiastic and worked really
hard for this film.
Sashank is our first choice to the character of cabbie. With
fine performance in his first 3 films - Aithe, Sye and Anukokunda
Oka Roju - he got right foundation to become a big artist
in this industry.
Babu: We initially cast Rajiv Kanakala for this film.
I went to Jagapati Babu to narrate another film in which he
is supposed to play the role of hero. He asked me to narrate
Anukokunda Oka Roju subject out of curiosity. He liked the
role of suspended cop immensely and wanted to do that role.
Jagapati Babu added some commercial weight to this film. He
gave extra dates for this film. He was very punctual. That
character needs an aged man who is unmarried. We did not want
him to look like regular police in films. Hence I avoided
any hard drinks or cigarettes to his character and have him
Real juice pack to carry with him all the time.
Yadav: Generally people look at Narsing Yadav as a Rowdy.
But I see an innocent man in him all the time. He was the
first choice for that character and did extremely well.
Vardhan: Lakshmipati was the original choice for that
character. But he had to dropout after one schedule due to
date problems. Harshavardhan was supposed to play the character
played by Ravi Prakash. Harsha Vardhan did an amazing work.
scenes you shot first?
We shot the film as per the locations. We shot the climax
of the film first. We shot the heroine introduction shots
during the ending of shoot.
the first time in Telugu films, I have seen the usage of drugs
shown in a realistic way. What are the drugs used and how
did you obtain information about the drugs?
It was a tough job, as we did not know the right source. The
people who use drugs refuse to admit about it as it would
expose them. We had to carefully maneuver to get authentic
information about availability, shape and effect of various
drugs. We made duplicate drugs after obtaining the information.
The drugs (duplicates) we shown in the film are Ecstasy tablets,
Rohypnol (DRD - Date Rape Drug) and ganja (Cocaine). They
do distribute Cocaine in pockets with the image of scorpion
drawn on it.
that raking in emotions
Irritating shot: The scene in which Harshavardhan gets
down from running car and gets in again. I was not getting
the timing right. We shot this scene in Mothi Nagar road with
around 2000 onlookers on the streets. I was not satisfied
with that shot, but had to keep it anyway.
shot: The Tarzan jumping into auto from top by tearing
of auto cover. It was a very difficult and risky shot. If
you look at the expression on his face when he fell into auto,
it was natural and very much appropriate to the scene.
shot: I am very much impressed the way Charmy acted in
the scene where she looks at the cap of pen after she woke
up. She gave the right expression. If she looks at too quizzically,
it would reveal that there is a mystery behind it. You would
know the meaning of her expression only in the climax when
she remembers that scene again.
shot: The shot in which cult people throw kerosene on
Charmy. If you look at the shooting location, the scene was
so real that it terrifies you. The entire effect/ambience
of the real shoot was not effectively converted into the film
shot: The shot in which Narsing Yadav wears beard for
the pouranika role and sits in the backseat of the car.
seem to give lots of importance to minute details to have
authenticity. Be it locations or ambience?
Yeah. We did not use any regular places. We deliberately avoided
shooting in studios or regular outdoor locations. We shot
a few scenes in Rama Naidu studios as a part of the story
takes place in Rama Naidu studios. The credit should go to
the art director Ravi in scouting the right locations. I used
real locations as per the story.
about cinematographer Sarvesh Murari?
He did an amazing work for a debutant. We used filters to
get chocolate tint to the film. He used 'skip bleach' technique
to shoot Needalle song. If you observe the shot of camera
roaming around Charmy sitting at a height, those kinds of
scenes would be shot using cranes. But, Sarvesh did it using
handheld camera. He is highly talented. We used cloudy whether
to shoot Aithe film, and we used direct sunlight shots for
Anukokunda Oka Roju. Hence you find the texture of photography
of Aithe to be pleasanter than Anukokunda Oka Roju.
about Keeravani's work?
MM Keeravani has given wide array of tunes for this film.
He saw the Aithe film and knew what kind of music he should
give to my films. I am not big enough to give him a certificate.
But I think, he has done terrific work.
we planned to have 4 songs in the film. It was producer Gunnam
Gangaraju's idea to insert Righto Lefto' song. We were supposed
to have 'roaming in the night' shots for that block, but Gangaraju
suggested that we should have a song. And it worked.
many days did you take to shoot this film?
I worked over 2 months.
we shot the film for 90 working days. We planned for 70 working
days. But our time estimation failed and we shot it for 90
days. The main reason for this is the night shoot. We took
it for granted that roads would be free from 12 mid night
till early morning. But in reality, there is nightlife in
Hyderabad. We got empty roads between 2 am to 3 am only. We
could only shot for an hour a day for night shoot.
production: Post production took around two and half months.
heard that this film's budget is around 3 crores. Why did
it cost so much?
I think you should be asking this question to the producer.
Here are the reasons I think. This film involves famous artists
and technicians like Jagapati Babu, Charmy and MM Keeravani.
It costs a bit more in terms of remunerations. I am a kind
of perfectionist. I give too much importance to even minute
details. Even if an extra artist is not good in the background
I go for another take. Hence the number of takes for each
shot was more. As I mentioned earlier we took more number
of working days to shoot the film.
is the feedback you got about Anukokunda Oka Roju on the release
The industrywalas complained about the climax. The ordinary
people are appreciating climax. On a whole, there is positive
buzz and no negative remarks.
did you learn after making Anukokunda Oka Roju?
I am happy with the creative side of the film. But I learnt
a couple of things from production aspect.
have better understanding about how much time it would take
to shoot at particular live location.
2. Should not be too perfect regarding the ambience.
did the dubbing go for this film?
Sunitha completed her dubbing work in just 4 days. That was
an amazing feat. We wanted the voices in this film to be different
from other films and at the same time authentic. We scouted
for few real software engineers to do dubbing of background
voices in few scenes. Hence it took more time, effort and
money. It would cost us less if we use regular dubbing artists
as they are seasoned. We avoided them, as they sound routine.
is the total exposure of this film and what is the length
of director's cut and final version?
The total exposure we used for this film was 1.15 lakh feet.
The director's cut consisted of 15,000 feet. The final version
of the film has 13,000 feet.
there any deleted scenes in this film?
We cannot delete any scene in this film because each scene
is linked to the story. However, we trimmed few scenes. Few
of these scenes are -
the car chase in the second half by 2 minutes
2. A bit of play that occurred before handing the envelope
to the oldman.
3. A few beautiful montage shots when Charmy gets lonely
when her parents go to Tirupati.
Took a long gap between Aithe and Anukokunda Oka Roju?
What did you do in this gap?
I was supposed to do a couple of films, which were shelved.
Here are the details of these films -
KLN Raju - Tarun film: I developed a script for a
film to be produced by KLN Raju. I considered Tarun as hero.
I narrated the story to Tarun and he has become unavailable
to me later. I probably scared him off with the story line.
That film is about 'out of body experience'. It is the extreme
level of Yoga where you attain special powers where you
communicate with other people through telepathy. The earthquake
incident in Gujarat inspired me. It is about a girl who
trapped in debris of earthquake who is found after 7-8 days.
The story is about how that girl used out of body experiences
to communicate with a common boy. This story idea is one
of my bests. Though it deals with the concept of out of
body experience, it has pleasant feel to it with smooth
narration. Finally, that project was shelved.
Pratyusha creations with Uday Kiran as hero: This
film is a good love story with military backdrop. Everything
shown in this film has the background of military (even
houses, hospitals etc). We started the film with Uday Kiran
as hero. When the producers contacted Indian Military for
shooting permission they asked huge sum (runs into crores
of rupees) as security deposit. They would refund the entire
amount after shooting is completed. But the producer cannot
block so much of liquid cash by keeping it as deposit. Hence
that film was shelved.
Anukokunda Oka Roju: Then I decided that I should
not make films with established heroes as it would have
some problems associated with it. I started a heroine-oriented
film called 'Anukokunda Oka Roju'. Pratyusha banner was
supposed to produce this film. But they felt that it would
be unsafe to make their debut in Telugu films with Thriller.
When they backed out, I approached Gunnam Gangaraju and
narrated him the script. He came forward to make a film
without making any changes to the story. Just Yellow is
like my home turf. That is how Anukokunda Oka Roju happened.
us about your 3rd film?
I have prepared the story. It is going to be a love story.
Other details of cast and crew are awaited.
fields do you think Indian film industry are lacking in compared
to Hollywood and European films?
There are 2 departments we are lacking in. One is Sound (mixing,
effects and background music) and the other one is make-up.
The film Black is of Hollywood standard even in sound. We
need to improve a lot in make-up department. Black is the
best film I have seen in recent times.
heard you got married recently. Tell us about it?
I got married on 19th May of this year. It was an arranged
marriage. My wife does not like my kinds of films. She is
a lover of mass flicks.
Manmadhuru by Vijaya Bhaskar
Santosham by Dasarath
Jayam by Teja.