you direct any Telugu straight film in future?
did you stop directing Telugu films?
My kind of sensibilities will appeal to very niche section
of audiences in Telugu. I stopped making films for audiences.
Now I am making films for myself. And my kind of films would
not work for Telugu people. I am not capable of making a hit
film in Telugu anymore. Checkout the Telugu films that are
being made now! Even the Telugu film posters frighten me.
should tell you one example about what Telugu filmmakers used
to think of me. It was the time when Chiranjeevi gave three
continuous blockbusters (Gang Leader, Rowdy Alludu and Gharana
Mogudu). Then somebody gave a suggestion jocularly that I
should direct Chiranjeevi so that he could get a miserable
failure for a change. That was my USP in Telugu film industry
at that time.
it was you who made blockbusters like Shiva, Kshanakshanam
and Gayam in Telugu?
is right. When I made those films I was new. I had to prove
my caliber. Hence I made those films with intensity. After
making films like Satya and Company, I can't make a film like
was Telugu film industry that made you a star director. And
now you say you are not interested in directing Telugu films.
Is it fair?
I do not owe anything to anybody. Shiva was a good film and
that is why I got some fame. When I made bad films, people
us about your proposed film with Nagarjuna as hero?
We will be making a bilingual. And Nagarjuna would act in
the Telugu version. I will be producing it. There is another
person directing this film.
seem to have smitten by 'horror flick' bug. You keep on making
horror flicks again and again?
To tell you that truth, I got the story idea of making 'Rathri'
film while I was doing my graduation in Siddardha Engineering
College. I came to the film industry wanting to direct Rathri
as my debut film. But Nagarjuna asked me to come up with another
storyline. That is how 'Shiva' happened. Later on I wanted
to show my capability to Telugu film industry by directing
'Rathri'. And it flopped miserably (giggles).
are more interested in producing these days. Will you direct
in the future?
I will direct only those films that challenge the director
Have you seen any Telugu films recently?
In the past 4-5 years, I have seen only Jayam and Idiot. Jayam
has beautiful narrative. Idiot has terrific characterization.
created a genre in filmmakers. Lots of people feel proud to
be from Varma's school?
(shrugs) I do not think they are making the kind of films
I made. Probably they are following my attitude (tantrums)
off the screen.
you direct a straight Telugu film or not?
You are the guys who driven me out of Telugu film industry.
Now you are asking me to make films in Telugu. I do not even
know that much of actors in Telugu now.
do you think Hindi remakes of Telugu films are failing?
When they remake, they ignore the soul and various other things
that go into making the original version a hit. That's why
they fail. Checkout Subhalagnam! It is a small budget film
made in a simple setup in Telugu original. But in Hindi, they
erected a set worth 75 lakhs. The simplicity has simply disappeared.
You are more interested in tapping new talent in terms
I do not have any noble intentions of reserving a seat for
me in heaven by encouraging new talent. I am an experienced
filmmaker. There are certain guys who are good at directing.
I know how things work if I use and guide them. That is how
we get mutually benefited.
heard that Sahara Group has given you 300 crores for joint
Yeah! Please check that money out underneath my bed. (giggles).
do you think about standards of filmmaking and technology
Compared to what Shiva has brought into Telugu film industry,
there is not much progress in the past 14 years.