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20 Apr 2014
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Lagadapati Sridhar

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Exclusive interview with Lagadapati Sridhar

He is one producer who came as a spotlight in film industry after his successful stint as a top-ranking entrepreneur. He made his mark as a promising producer by giving hits like Evadigola Vaadidhi and Style. Both made themselves to the notch attracting hoards of film buffs. Apart from this, this man of simplicity and high thinking with great passion for films, he has come out with yet another wholesome family entertainer Viyyalavari Kayyalu. He is Lagadapati Sridhar. Viyyalavari Kayyalu is gearing up to release on 1st of November. Here are the excerpts from an interview with Lagadapati Sridhar.

What is the good reason is making a film with Udaykiran and Sattibabu. They both are in oblivion for sometime.

I really don't brother about the success and failure of any individual. I only look at their talent. You see, there is no success for EVV and Rajesh for long before Evadigola Vaadidhi. Everybody knows the talent of EVV. Likewise, there is no hit for Lawrence as hero before Style. But, both the projects clicked. Coming to the present film, I believe both Udaykiran and Satti Babu are talented. I know Uday Kiran and Satti Babu had hits a while ago in the form of Manasantha Nuvve and Nuvvu Nenu for former and, Oo Chinadaana and Ottesi Cheputhunna for latter. But, I felt this combination would do good.

Viyyalavari Kayyalu sounds like an old title

Title should reflect the theme of the film. And our film is a wholesome family entertainer and hence we thought that the title is apt. Also, even though we like Pizza and Burgers, they dont fit into the marriage reception. (laughs)

How did you come up with this project?

I was immensely pleased with the films Nuvvosthanante Nevaddantaana and Bommarillu, which provided both entertainment and message. I was intending to make such a film when E.Satti Babu came to me with a suitable line. We developed it and went ahead with it.

So what kind of message are you trying to snap to the audience with this film?

There is message in the film but my top priority is entertainment. Message should be provided with full entertainment. Now coming to the message part, the film deals with the fact that after marriage a family should consider their daughter-in-law as their own daughter and similarly for the son-in-law. This is portrayed in an interesting and an entertaining manner.

Is there any particular reason in the selection of Uday Kiran as the hero for this subject?

I don't think there is any special reason in doing this film with Uday Kiran. I always respect people who respect me. Uday Kiran saw my movies and met me several times to appreciate the efforts. He also wished that we should do a film. I told him the story of Sattibabu. The same thing was narrated to two other heroes Tarun and Nitin. But, they expressed their doubts that presence of Srihari might interfere with their image. It was Uday Kiran, who immediately said OK. Not only the cast, but all my well-wishers and friends prompted to me go ahead with the story.

Despite such observations by the two young heroes, how did you zero in on Srihari?

Srihari is a lovable person in the industry. He is like my family member. And also all the films with Srihari in the lead were blockbusters. His characterization is superbly amalgamated with all elements of entertainment. There is sentiment, action, courage, comedy and entertainment. Also personally, Srihari is very nice. He is one person who calls spade a spade without holding anything in his heart.

What about heroine Neha Julka? What is her stamina in the film?

Firstly, Trisha, Nayantara, Asin and Kangana Raunat were in my mind. As they expressed their difficulty with dates, I finally made it to Neha Julka. I also considered the sentiment that any heroine who did a movie with Chandrasekhar Yeleti turned out to be a hit heroine. Neha Julka's performance is really good. I am sure; she would get excellent response to her role. Besides getting a place in the industry, she is also an endeared girl to the household women; Thanks to her repeated TV ads.

Tell us about the music.

I had to be really careful with music because my first two movies are super hits with music. Even though Evadigola Vadidhe started out with average to poor talk at the boxoffice, response to the audio was very good. Style audio got excellent response as soon as the audio released. I was adviced that I should keep up my standard and deliver another excellent music for Viyyalavari Kayyalu. I thank Ramana Gogula for his concentrated efforts and terrific output. Director Sattibabu too deserves kudos to his efforts in canning the songs aptly.

Earlier, you termed your movie Style as Telugu Sholay. Don't you think the statement is somehow exaggerated?

Even now I tell the same. I said the film would be like Sholay, but I never said it would run like a Sholay. The film is mired in miscast. For Lawrence, who has a market of 3 crores, Style collected whopping 12 crores. Don't you think it is a success? Venkatesh said that Style would run for 25 weeks. Aswini Dutt ruled one year run for the film. However, some said that the movie was a cost failure. Our business is to do just good film. Certainly, it would be out of context to come with such disappointing comments. But, I am not bothered about them at all. Earlier, Tata Group firm did a film with Prabhudeva titled Tapana. Compared to that film, Style is far more advanced commercially and entertainment-wise.

What kind of films do you want to do?

I am here in the film industry not to make any profits. I always believed that film making is kind of a social service. I am practicing what I say. I want people to judge me as a good producer.

How did you justify your word of doing social service while making commercial movies?

I succeeded in giving rib-tickling comedy with my first film (Evadigola Vaadidhi). My second film Style achieved its target in consolidating an aim, if every any audience holds it. Viyyalavari Kayyalu will fill the audience hearts with love. I am sure; this film comes out with a good message that would help bring in a change in the mindsets all for good. A lover can wait even for three or four years for his love, but he cares little or nothing when it comes to convincing the parents. A marriage done with sanction of love from each other and at the same time approval from parents will be a real bliss. That is our message effectively dealt with.

Your future projects?

I have several projects in my mind. I want to do films with Balakrishna, Venkatesh, Allu Arjun, Mahesh Babu. I also want to do a revenge-themed film; a sequel to Evadigola Vadidhi. Further, I wish to do films with EVV, Sattibabu and Srinivasa Reddy. The idea of remaking Style in Kannada is also there.

Any idea of producing films in other languages?

No. I know very little about the culture of other segments. It will be a big risk to poke my nose into areas lesser known to me. I am content with Telugu filmmaking and would stick to it.

Interviewed by Phani

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