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Chitchat with Yasho Sagar
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June 30, 2008

Call him Yasho Sagar. A Bangalorian makes his debut as Tollywood hero in director A. Karunakaran’s latest film Ullasanga Utsahanga (UU). His passion for Telugu films is beyond words of expression. He claims: “Though my dad is a busy producer in Kannada, but for that hit movie Mungaru Malai, I haven’t seen any other Kannada film during the last seventeen years. My alternatives are Hindi and English films.” His dad from Karnataka and mom from Chittoor district in Andhra Pradesh, Yasho Sagar (formerly Bharath) says: “Now that I have made my debut in Telugu film industry, I shall never be doing any film either in Kannada or in Tamil. Hereafter, only Telugu films.” The strong Kannada accent in his petered out Telugu doesn’t deter him from dubbing his voice, though alternate arrangement is made with a dubbing artiste. A technology-savvy, he also shows interest in latest Ipods, laptops, Internet connections and mobile cameras. Excerpts from chitchat with him:

How come you are in Tollywood?
I am from Bangalore. I have been associated with the films since 1991… that means from the time I was a child. My dad had produced about 20-to-25 films in Kannada since then. The ambience of film shooting is not alien to me. When I expressed my desire to enter into films (as hero), my mother insisted that I should make my debut only in Telugu. It is because she is from Andhra Pradesh (Chittoor district). In tune with my mom’s wish, I am here. Actually, I met director Karunakaran at a function in Chennai. Over a period of time, we got together and the project did materialize this way. I also like Hyderabad very much. I came here a couple of years ago and observed a lot many things about film industry here.

What’s the specialty of Ullasanga Utsahanga? How different is the love subject in it?
It is not a commercial love story. It is different with fascinating and platonic love. It has the backdrop of a city. I play the role of a roaming guy in a colony and fall in love with a girl who comes there to spend the summer vacation.

Tell about that caption of the film – The Rain of Love?
Actually, it was the caption considered for Karunakaran’s Tholiprema. Now, we took it and kept for my film. We actually thought of putting it as the title. Later we dropped the idea as it might sound as an English title.

How comfortable are you in dubbing?
It’s a not a big problem. I can speak good Telugu. In fact, we readied two options: Dubbing voice by myself and alternative from a dubbing artiste. Director Karunakaran will decide the final version on his discretion.

What about Sneha Ullal? Did you find any Aish-like features in her?
Not really. She has changed a lot and is seen with new looks. Her hairstyle also changed a lot. The credit goes to the director. Ullasanga Utsahanga is her debut film in Telugu. She is a busy artiste in Bollywood. I felt happy working with her.

Is there any resemblance between UU and Karunakaran’s film with Pawan Tholiprema?
Nothing like that. My film is totally a different one. I had watched Tholiprema more than a couple of times. I didn’t find any similarity between the two.

Tell us about music director GV Prakash?
He is a genius. Now, he is just 21 years. Previously, he worked for Tamil hit film Veil. Seeing his raking performance, Karunakaran roped him in for our film.

Did you take any training in dance?
No. It all happened only after I got into the film. Choreographer Kalyan master did single card for this film. He is very friendly. He is very smooth and soft. That’s why I didn’t feel any problems. Not even once, I felt nervous.

Did you watch your footage in the film? How did you feel?
Not much. I just watched two scenes. The film is currently under Digital Intermediate (DI) process and scanning. Karunakaran watched the output and expressed his supreme satisfaction about the output. Cinematography by Andrew Y. is fantastic. He was the assistant to PC Sriram.

What were the Kannada films that you watched in Bangalore?
But for that hit film Mungaru Malai, I didn’t watch any Kannada film since my childhood. I regularly watch Telugu and English. I didn’t even watch Tamil films. It is because both Telugu and Kannada are given equal importance by Kannada people. To that matter, more importance is attached to Telugu films. There is no jingoism. I watched a good number of films of Chiranjeevi and Pawan Kalyan.

What is the budget of UU? How many working days did it take?
We have never compromised anywhere. We wanted quality first. The budget took us somewhere around Rs. 8 crores. The film was shot for about 120 working days. A good movie taken with Rs. 2 crore or Rs. 10 crore budget will collect the same revenue. Since this being my introduction film, we don’t want to take chances over quality.

Who is your favorite actress?

What do you do at past time?
I go to gym, morning walk, golf etc.

Is Yasho Sagar your real name?
My real name was Bharath. I turned Yasho Sagar based on my horoscope and numerological suggestion. Yasho, I think a Sanskrit word, means fame. Sagar means as you all know – Samudram. This happened after the shoot was in progress.

When are you planning to release the film?
Most probably on the second Friday of July 2008.

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