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Chitchat with Sravanthi Ravi Kishore
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Sravanthi Ravi Kishore who produced top-notch all-round entertainers like Ladies Tailor, Nuvve Kavali and Nuvvu Naaku Nachav in the past is impressed with 'Nuvvostanante Nenoddantana' so much that he bought the overseas distribution rights. This film is releasing in USA on this Friday (28th January 2005) with 5 prints in 5 cities. had chitchat with Sravanthi Ravi Kishore regarding the same. Here are the excerpts…..

25th January 2005

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What made you enter overseas distribution market?
Actually it was not a business decision I have made. I made good films in the past and I intend to make good films in the future as well. After watching 'Nuvvostanante Nenoddantana', I was exchanging thoughts with MS Raju. I was appreciating him for making such a good film and told him how films like these would instill confidence in me to go ahead and do many more good and sensible films. When I asked him about the business of the film, MS Raju said that there are around 10 interested parties asking for overseas rights of this film. I asked him about how much he was expecting from overseas rights. When he quoted the figure, I said that I would buy the rights. He wondered at my proposal as he felt this is not my line of business. I told him that I liked this film very much and I wanted to be a part of this film's team. Then I made a jocular comment that after the deal I would be holding rights for entire world where as the producer own the rights of AP only. 'Nuvvostanante..' belongs to the genre of Nuvve Kavali & Nuvvu Naaku Nachchav (produced by Sravanthi Ravi Kishore). When I watch films like Toliprema, Dil To Pagal Hain, Nuvvostanante…, I would be in trance for a few days. And I had an urge to watch the film and my friends also felt the same.

'Nuvvostanante …' is one film which you can proudly invite your foreign friends and watch it with them without being embarrassed. This film has tremendous Indian traditional values. And I would be releasing this film in countries like Japan, South Africa and Korea with subtitles. I want to expand the boundary of Telugu film market overseas with this film. First half of the film is of international standards. Second half has more Indian-ness. Prabhudeva handled the script very well. There is very good amount of dramatization in the second half. Songs are good and background score is great. After watching 1st half of the film, I felt very insecure and inferior as a producer about why I am not able to deliver such kinds of films.

You have distribution outlets for Guntur and Krishna territory as well. You doing overseas distribution could be seen as business proposition. Right?
Let me tell you my way of looking at it. I aim for success. And money follows success automatically.

What about making good films like Nuvvostanante?
My track record has been pretty good. 10 out of the last 11 films I have made, have been hits. Only Ela Cheppanu was a failure. When I look back, I don't regret making any film.

Tell us about your future project?
I am interested in doing 'Maghamasam' film. I liked the story very much. Sirivennela garu liked it very much. It would be a complete musical. We would announce it when I am through with the script. Ramana would be directing this film.

What gives you satisfaction as a producer?
When audience watch my film and come out and say that they got entertainment worth the money spent on the ticket, we forget all our hard work and enjoy the feeling with satisfaction. Every film is like a baby.

What is the box office fate of Yuvasena?
I broke even and made little profits. I think certain portion of audiences could not catch up with the technique in the film as it deals with cyber crime and IP tracing.

The current format of entertainment tax has ruined the lives of exhibitors as the success rate of films is very less. Do you have any suggestions for this problem?
In USA, they do not have the concept of fixed tariff. The exhibitor has the decision making power about how much he would like to charge per ticket. Depending of the craze and budget of the film, he would vary the ticket price. But in India, the ticket price is same whether you watch a 20-crore budget film or 1-crore budget film. Ticket price is same for a Chiranjeevi's film and a film with new face.

I think the government should charge entertainment tax per print basis at the labs itself. Let the producer and distributor bear the burden of tax and accordingly sell it to the exhibitor. AP Government is earning around 60 crores per annum on entertainment tax. Let Government charge per print basis. Let them have different tax bracket for low budget films and high budget films on the basis of number prints. If exhibitor were given the authority to price the ticket, we can see many more people visiting theaters. This would do a world of good to small films. This process would also facilitate the committed producers who could afford to release the film on their own.

We are having a very low success rate. What could be the reason?
If you keep the success rate aside, let us look into the number of good films made last year. There are hardly 4-5 films. There must be something seriously wrong in the system if only 5 out of 120 films turned out to be good ones. There is so much talent that had not been tapped. Because of the high amount of work I have, I might have ignored a few talented guys. We need to let the new talent lead the way in Telugu film industry. Otherwise, we are on the brink of danger of being outdated. Let us take the Malayalam film industry. A decade back Malayalam film industry used to be the number one in producing creative and good films. Later on they started playing safe and continued doing similar kinds of films. And now it has become stale. We have seen new talented directors coming in Telugu film industry. But most of these directors started delivering routine films after a couple of hits. I want the directors to experiment and take risks to make good films.

Let us also talk about the involvement of producers. However big a director is, a producer should always involve in the script and oversee how the film is shaping up. But most of our producers who prefer employing new hit directors are interested in coming up with hero-director combinations and sell the films than overseeing the production. Don't you think filmmakers like you and MS Raju should stand as an example?
You cannot blame producers regarding this aspect. Every producer wants to make films with big heroes. Most of the big heroes tend to ask for technical team as per their comfortable levels. And most of these big heroes do not want any involvement from the producers. This involvement from big heroes might also be one of the reasons for this situation.

What do you think is the secret behind any successful film?
It is the teamwork. The producer should be able to select a good team of technicians, should understand their strengths and weaknesses and would work with them consistently.

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