come there is so much of gap between Seetayya release and
the muhurat of Devadasu?
I do focus on one film at a time. Hence, there would be around
9-10 months of gap between my latest release and the start
of the next project. It is difficult to get the call sheets
of stars on immediate basis when your script is ready. That
is why I did Devadasu with new faces. My brother expired in
the last year. My wife conceived my daughter Yuktha after
few months. Hence I had to spare lot of time to my family.
I took a gap of an year after the release of Seetayya film.
us about the number of working days and locations of Devadasu
I started the shooting of the film on 14th December 2004 and
completed on 14th September 2005. I shot this film in a span
of 9 months. The total number of working days for this film
is 190 where as we shot it for 40 days in USA.
are the details of locations.
USA (40 days): Vital part of the film takes place in USA
and it was really necessary to find out right locations in
USA. We shot the film in Virginia, Washington DC, New Jersey,
New York, Monument Valley, Zeon Valley, Valley of Fire, Las
Vegas, Mohave, Los Angeles and San Diego.
2. Phuket Islands (15 days): We needed an isolated
island in USA, but could not find one. Hence we went to Phuket
islands to shoot for 15 days and show it as an island in US.
3. India (135 days): We shot majority of the film is
Hyderabad. We shot a song in Rajahmundry and a few scenes
did you get the story idea for Devadasu?
I did a love story earlier in the form of Seetaramula Kalyanam
Chootamu Rarandi. It had youth elements in the first half
and family elements in the second half. I wanted to do an
out and out youth entertainer. I got the basic idea when I
was shooting for Seetayya film. And I developed it after Seetayya
did you name this film as Devadasu?
Devadasu stands as the symbol of extremism in love. And I
have to grab the attention of public with the title and a
title like Devadasu stands out. I kept the tagline as Premalo
Munigi Telandi, which means that fall and raise in the love.
It gives a positive feel to the film as it says that you win
in love unlike the old Devadasu where the ending was tragic.
There is no similarity between ANRs classical Devadasu
and my Devadasu. I decided to attract the attention of film
industry by printing a 36
page colorful invitation. No muhurat invitation for any
other film in South India was printed as 36-page booklet.
did you arrive at the casting of Ram and Ileana?
Initially I wanted to introduce a hero who became successful
hero today. But it did not work out. Then I went to another
hero who is another successful today. That too did not work
out. Then I decided to cast a fresh face. When I met Sravanthi
Ravi Kishore, he shown a photographs of youngster in his computer
and asked me how that kid was. I liked that guy instantly
and told Sravanthi Ravi Kishore that I want to cast that kid
as my hero. Later on Ravi Kishore revealed that the kid is
his nephew Ram. Ram was 16 at that time.
I wanted to cast a fresh face as heroine. But my friends suggested
that we should go for Genelia as her film Satyam was super
hit at that time. I went to Mumbai to ask her for dates. Genelia
told me that she was doing only with big and established heroes
and did not want to work with newcomers. I was very disappointed
and came to my hotel room. When I switched on the TV, I noticed
Ileana in Fair and Lovely advertisement. Incidentally Genelia
also acted in Fair and Lovely ad earlier.
I enquired about Ileana, I was told that she came to Hyderabad
to sign in Tejas film. At that time, Teja signed Ileana
for two projects. Teja is a good friend of me. I called him
up and requested him to spare the dates of Ileana so that
she can simultaneously participate in two shoots. But Teja
said that he dont mind Ileana working for my film, but
she should complete one film by Teja before acting in my film.
I was disappointed again.
Teja called me up after 20 days and said that the script is
changed a bit and he dont mind letting Ileana get off.
I latched on to it and signed Ileana. I told Ileana and she
posses the looks of Jayaprada and physique of Simran. I would
like to thank Teja for the favor.
and Ileana are going to create a sensation after the release
of Devadasu film.
us about USA shooting part?
When I applied for Visa for location scouting in USA, it got
rejected. Then Gopi (USA Shooting Coordinator) helped me by
getting the right documentation for the second time. We (me
and my wife Geeta) got stamping for multiple entry for 10
years. I went to USA for 4 times to scout locations with Gopi.
And I took the biggest risk in my life by shooting the Indian
part of the film first. I needed visa for 36 cast and crewmembers
and I would lose lot of money if visa gets rejected for my
crew. Thanks to Gopi again. He did perfect groundwork and
submitted the appropriate documentation. We got work permit
and visa for all the 36 members without any problem. We started
the US shooting on 28th of April and wrapped the USA part
up by 5th June.
would also like to thank Vellanki Vijaya Sekhar, Srini Anumolu,
Rambabu Suryadevara, Narendra Surabattula and Mahesh Chengareddy
for their excellent cooperation. Devadasus USA shoot
would not have happened so smoothly without the generous help
of these gentlemen.
is the reason to opt for Chakri instead of your regular music
director MM Keeravani?
MM Keeravani scored music for 4 out of 5 films I directed.
I could not utilize the dates Keeravani given to me as project
got delayed. And by the time I started the project, he got
busy with the projects he committed prior. Hence I had to
lookout for an alternative music director. Chakri was in touch
with me even before he became a music director and I liked
his tunes for Idiot and Avunu Valliddaru Ista Paddaru a lot.
He can score both melodies and youthful songs. He has given
excellent tunes, orchestra and re-recording for Devadasu.
We did rerecording of this film from 2nd December 2005 to
2nd January 2006 for 30 days. There are 9 full-length songs
and 2 bit songs in the album.
do you think are the best songs in terms of picturization
in your opinion?
Telusa: Melody version of this song comes during
the titles of Devadasu. The sad version of this songs comes
at an emotional moment of the film.
I shot this peppy song in various places in USA like Los
Angeles, San Diego, Newyork and Washington DC on the lead
This song is about forgive me concept shot in
Nakistam: This song is shot in Grand Canyon.
Chinnodu: I am a great fan of LR Eeswari and I love
the way she changes her accent in funny way so quickly while
singing. I remixed Mayadari Chinnodu song and Chandrabose
came up with variety lyrics in just half a day. This song
is also shot in USA.
Sirivennela and Chandrabose are my favorite lyricists.
about item song by Shriya?
Shriya did a special song, but it is not an item song. She
comes in vital scene of the film and becomes the cause to
a twist in this film. She did few scenes and the song Kurrollu
(sung by Malathi) in Devadasu.
seem to be less quotient of comedy in your films except for
L3. What do you say about it?
If there is scope for comedy in film in terms of characterizations,
I would definitely have comedy in it. All films other than
L3 had no characterizations that had scope for comedy. But
in Devadasu there would be ample comedy -
Madhavs comedy in 1st half.
2. MS Narayanas comedy in 2nd half.
3. Comedy by Pug Dog (the kind of dog featured in advertisements
final question! Why do you think that Telugu film lovers should
watch Devadas film?
work really hard and there is good consistency and success
rate for my films. I maintain good content and film lovers
who watch my films would not get disappointed.
2. Good music and nice songs picturization.
3. USA backdrop.
4. On screen magic by Ram and Ileana.
5. Characterizations and narration.
out comprehensive interview of idlebrain.com done on 9th July
KS Rama Rao 2
Mohan Babu 2
KV Ramana IAS
Devi Sri Prasad
AM Ratnam 2
Ram Gopal Varma 3
Mahesh Babu 2
Mohan Babu 1
KS Rama Rao 1
AS Ravi Kumar
Ram Gopal Varma 2
Ram Gopal Varma