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Interview with Kalyan Ram Nandamuri
Date: November 11, Hyderabad
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Kalyan Ram Nandamuri is known for variety and out-of-box thinking when it come to his movies. He succeeded in big way with Athanokkade movie and realised how he can create his own space in film industry. He is doing commercial yet different movies. His latest film Kathi is all set to release on 12 November. Here are the excerpts of an exclusive interview with Kalyam Ram Nandamuri -

How did Kathi movie happen?
I listened to the basic story in 2008 and okayed it. Meanwhile, Jayeebhava script got ready and we went ahead with that movie. Kathi is a sister-sentiment movie with ample action orientation.

We had seen umpteen sister-senti films in the past. How different is Kathi going to be?
I was also having the same doubt when story writer Vakkantham Vamsi came to narrate the story. Though it is a sister sentiment film, it will have a different angle to the main conflict point.

What do you think has gone wrong with your earlier movie Jayeebhava?
Jayeebhava is a template movie where the subject is same and hero is changed. I learnt two things after doing Jayeebhava. The first thing is that people expect something different when they come to watch my films. They doesn’t want me to do template movies. The second one is the orientation. After watching first half of the movie, the audiences expected high voltage action in the second half and couldn't appreciate the comedy-orientation in the second half. I don’t want to do any template movies in the future. I want to make sure that there is some thing different in my movie compared to other movies. The success of films like Athanokkade and Hareram vouch for it.

Tell us about your role in Kathi?
I am playing the character of Rama Krishna who is a football player. His goal is to play for the nation. He loves his joint family members and cares for them. The entire first half of the movie is jovial. His sister gets married and go to Rayalaseema. An unexpected twist of the tale forces Rama Krishna to travel to Rayalaseema and solve the problem his sister has got herself into unintentionally. The conflict point is neither dowry nor in-laws ego (which we usually see in sister sentiment films).

Why did you title the movie as Kathi?
Rama Krishna walks on razor edge situation in the entire second half. That is the reason why we titled it like that. Rama Krishna is also like Kathi (sword). A sword can be used for constructive and destructive purposes. When somebody tampers with his family members, Rama Krishna shows the destructive side of his sword.

Tell us about the other characters in the movie?
Saranya Mohan's character forms the base for the entire story. Shyam plays her husband. Sana Khan plays an important role of heroine in the movie. There is a small twist to her character. Ajay looks menacing in his negative role. Kota plays the positive role of father of Shyam.

Tell us about the technical departments?
Vakkantham Vamsi came with a good script which explores a different angle to sister-senti conflict point. M Ratnam penned dialogues for the movie. I have spoken most difficult and powerful dialogues in the movie. Ratnam’s dialogues took the story to next level. Sarvesh Murari did a fabulous job as cinematographer as the movie is going be a visual feast. He has also took a special interest in my make-up. I have a different get-up in the second half with toned body, dark circles around eyes, unshaven beard, shabby hair etc. Editor Gowtam Raju did a sustained editing as demanded by the subject.

Tell us about the action sequences. The trailer gives a glimpse of well-choreographed action episodes?
The action sequences in Athanokkade movie have got tremendous recognition because we wanted the fights to be believable at the same time shocking. I want my films to be different in terms of action sequences. If you look at the making trailer of Kathi, you will see a rotating vehicle which has a vehicle each going on the top and bottom of it. We have also shown how we did it in the making video. When I asked for the equipment to get that shot done from Mumbai, they quoted me a bomb. I sat down and used common sense and little bit of engineering. I went to city outskirts where they make body to the chassis of lorries. I observed it for 15 days about how they did it. I hired the right guy from there and made the equipment indigenously. It cost me 1/10th of what Mumbai guys charged to hire. A lot of thinking from ‘NTR Arts’ team has gone into action episodes of the movie. Audiences should be thrilled by watching action episodes.

Mallikharjun directed your film Abhimanyu long back and now you gave him another opportunity with Kathi?
Mallikharjun is a good commercial director. Though Abhimanyu failed to take off at box office, I firmly believe that Mallikharjun is a good director. He knows the pulse of commercial movies. He has clarity of what he is doing and he did an excellent work in Kathi movie. All he needed was a good support from the producer and we provided him with all the necessary inventory.

How many days did you shoot the movie for?
Kathi film was completed in 80 working days. Industry people didn’t believe that we finished the movie so soon despite having grand action episodes. The budget went little over because we didn’t want to compromise. The final runtime of the movie is 2 hours and 13 minutes.

What can Telugu movie lovers can expect from Kathi?
Kathi is a family-oriented movie. The sentiment scenes will be loved by female crowds. There are interesting action episodes in the second half. There is good entertainment as well. Please don’t miss the beginning of the movie. The climax fight of the movie has intelligence in it. Kathi will offer action, entertainment and sentiment.

After looking at promos of Kathi, fans are expecting you to deliver another Simha?
Let me put it straight. Simha is the portrayal of larger-than-life character which extraordinarily done by NBK babai. Films like Simha demand such kind of action episodes. Kathi is the portrayal of a boy-next-door who is caught up with a situation where there is no point of return. Hence the orientation should be different. Please watch Kathi with a fresh mind.

What is your next movie?
I am listening to various scripts. Will let you know once it is finalized.

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