Nani now okay with Natural Star tag!

Tuesday, December 19, 2017 - 13:45

As Nani gears up for the release of 'MCA', he talks about what he goes by in selecting stories, teaming up with talented co-stars, his upcoming movies, and more. 

I choose relatable, enjoyable stories:

Right from the beginning, the one criterion by which I have chosen scripts is their ability to entertain me.  I listen to stories as an audience.  They should be relatable.  However, some of the films I did in the early years didn't work.  

Lack of background is a blessing:

When one has a background, one is expected to go by some established rules.  In my case, I don't have any compulsions or stress.  I can pick my kind of films and go about it.  It's enough that I have people supporting me in my endeavours!

I don't pine for big directors:

I don't believe in working with big names because I am in the reckoning.  The opposite is true for me.  Because my movies are doing well, it's time for me to work with fresh talent, be it artists or technicians.  I don't calculate about a director's image or stardom before I sign up for a movie.  His sincerity and talent alone matter to me.  

Tensed but also confident:

I am tensed before the release of 'MCA' as much as I was before the release of 'Ashta Chamma'.  That said, we are encouraged by the advance bookings.  

Its story is familiar, but the way the characterizations have been written and the sequences play out is quite engaging.  When Venu Sriram narrated me the story, I was constantly excited about what would happen next.  

'MCA' has action mood, not fights:

There is an impression that the film may have more of action.  There is nothing like that.  In the second half, action mood is all over but the fights are very few and far between.

Real characters are the forte:

There are no larger-than-life characters in 'MCA'.  Even the hero is real and normal.  He expresses his insecurities, he develops misunderstandings with his brother and 'vadina'.  But when needed, he rises to the occasion and becomes a hero.  

Locations matter a lot:

We have done many scenes in Warangal and that was important in giving the film an aura of realistic environment.  You don't get that when you shoot in a studio set-up.  It was very difficult to shoot in real locations, but then, the way Sai Pallavi and Bhumika garu co-operated without complaining even once, it made me enjoy the whole process.  

In 'MCA', you can relate to the action mood because all the characters feel real.  They are not artificial anywhere.  

Bhumika, the sweetest co-star:

From the time I was beaten up by police for breaking queue rules at Ameerpet's Sathyam during the days of 'Khushi' to me getting an opportunity to act opposite Bhumika garu, it's has been a long way. She is so good that it's difficult to come across such a person.  She buys out gifts for my son.  She is like a family member for us.  

Sai Pallavi will be the cynosure:

I must say that all the scenes featuring Sai Pallavi will have the audience enjoy like crazy.  You won't be able to take your eyes off from her.  It's not like she outperformed others.  We all enjoyed working together.  Contrary to what was written about us for months on, we both got along really well on the sets of 'MCA'.  We can only laugh at the baseless rumours.  I wonder how such false rumours about us because so viral.  

Gossips shouldn't be atrocious:

I have read a very saddening rumour about my personal life.  How low they can stoop to!  A less-known website has published the wrong gossip without mentioning me.  They want to make money days before my film releases.  You can curse my acting and rip my movies apart.  That's fine.  But it hurts when you recklessly and unethically spread canards about my personal life.  I am really hurt.  

Being called a Natural Star is fine now:

Before 'Bhale Bhale Magadivoy', being dubbed as Natural Star in the media would be a bit embarrassing.  But I am OK with it now as it's not forced or crazy.  

Versatility matters:

Yes, I would love to do versatile roles like a Kamal Haasan.  But where are we getting scripts like 'Mahanadi' and 'Bharateeyudu'?  I listen to a lot of stories and such scripts are not being written.  

Upcoming movies:

The final version of the script with me and Nagarjuna garu is yet to be heard.  We both will take a call after that session is completed.  Krishnarjuna Yuddham' will be both new and commercial.  

I will definitely team up with Avasarala Srinivas, whose writing is lovely.  The multi-lingual film with Mani Ratnam sir didn't happen because of its scale and the presence of many actors in the script.  As for my production 'AWE', it will be out in February.  Horror, sci-fi, thriller and a lot more are there in the film.  It's a mix of genres.  

- Interviewed by Venugopal L