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Interview with Puri Jagannath
27-Sep-2008



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Puri Jagannath name is synonymous with blockbuster films. Badri, Itlu Sravani Subramanyam, Idiot, Sivamani, ANOTA, Super, 143 I Love you, POkiri, Desamuduru, Chiruta, and the saga continues.. Puri Jagannath is gearing up with his Neninthe starring Raviteja and then there is the project with Mahesh Babu again that Warner Brothers would produce.

Neninthe shooting is presently going on in Annapoorna Studios. 28th September is Puri Jagan's birthday. TotalTollywood quickly caught up with Puri Jagannath at Annapoorna studios during the shot gap of Neninthe.

You look tired. Is it because of the continuous shooting?
Lack of sleep, probably. Not because of shooting though. We are shooting only till the evening. My mind lingers over the scenes to be shot the next day and that makes me sleepless with all kinds of thoughts. I, sometimes, have to gulp on a couple of pills to get some rest.

So anything special for the birthday?
Nothing in particular. Oh! As you asked before! I am here for day and night shooting tomorrow.

What is Neninthe abut?
This is about the industry. This is our story and our life. It is about those aspirants who land in Krishna Nagar (of Hyderabad) to become a part of the industry.

There are several films in the past that touched on similar concept
Yes. There were a few. For example, Khadgam. It only depicted a part of the industry. In Neninthe we touched on every thing. Every one will be able to relate themselves in the film. There are some punches, appropriate portrayal of problems, mistakes, fans, competetion between heroes and what not. every thing.

Dont you think that is risky? You would develop lot of enemity?
No two persons would share the same preference about the God. I am not expecting every one on this earth to love me. I am making a genuine attempt here. No one could ever say that the film is false portrayal.


What are the lead characters about
Hero comes to the industry with the ambition of becoming a director. Heroine is a side dancer in the films.

Neninthe is produced by Danayya. But you made a statement that you would not produce for outside banner a little while ago.
I did make that statement in the past. I was in serious pressure from producers then. But these days, producer has no chance (laughs). In this present circumstances, if I produce a film, I will have to take home all the problems of a producer too. So, I decided to take my decision back.

What do you think are the reasons for this over budget films?
You cannot pin point this on to one. This is all happening because of the false image. Having the biased mindset about satisfying image. for example like Unnecessary fights etc.

How do you judge your remuneration?
As per the market (laughs). You only get what you are worth but not what you demand. There are no fools here to just give you what you ask for. In my case, I recently got an offer for some amount and only then I realized that I could demand so much. So technically it is others who evaluate your worth. Probably success is the mesaue there.

What is your opinion on the flexi ticket price in the first two weeks?
These are all sensitive issues and you never know what you are pulling yourslef into. As far as I know, producers and theaters got good share because of the hiked up ticket price. So, I guess it would be a loss to the producers by removing this.

Your next films?
One film with my brother Sairam Shankar in the lead. Adityaram will produce this film. and the next one would be with Mahesh Babu.

Tell us about Mahesh Babu's film
We got better story than Pokiri for Mahesh Babu. Line is finalized. We are still working on the final touches. This will be a trilingual film (Hindi, Telugu, Tamil) produced by Warner Brothers. I might get Hollywood offers if this clicks (laughs).

Do you feel accomplished?
Not really. I always have the wish to make a film with story. I am not saying all the films I directed did not have good story. I am talking about a true, natural and honest story; a burning problem; But such films have no commercial value. Since crores are involved in making, I am sticking to commercial aspects of this.

Thank you for your time and Advanced birthday wishes


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