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Interview with Krishna Vamsi
Date: 3 November 2011, Hyderabad
krishna vamsi

Most of the directors start their career as people of passion. But after tasting big successes, their passion gets diluted and commercial orientation towards making quick buck starts. But there are very few highly talented directors in Telugu cinema who stick to their passion and standards and refuse to budge to the temptation of money. Krishna Vamsi is one among those precious few. He has delivered biggest commercial entertainers like Ninne Pelladatha and Murari. But never went after the stars, but stuck to his principle of making good/sensible cinema. His latest film Mogudu is releasing on 4 November 2011. Here are the excerpts of our exclusive interview -

What is the reason behind the gap between Mahatma and Mogudu?
I had two big offers in between and somehow both the projects were differed. I had worked on the scripts for those two projects in that year. Then Mogudu happened.

How did Mogudu happen?
Nallamalupu Bujji has approached me with Gopichand’s combination. Gopichand has mass body language and I have certain kind of class sensibility. I had to prepare a subject that wouldn’t disappoint people who watch my movies as well as Gopichand movies.

I personally like family entertainers where there is a joint family setup, genuine emotions, strong relationships and reflection of our tradition/culture. The last such movie I have done with a big hero was Murari. Though Sasirekha Parinayam and Chandamama were also family entertainers, they were done by budding heroes. Hence it is a good opportunity to work in a better way when a salable hero like Gopichand does the project.

What does the story of Mogudu deal with?
I have dealt with two sides - girl and boy. A girl grows up with her parents for 18/20 years and enters into in-laws house. Her in-laws place will be strange and intimidating. There is a new social atmosphere. Her husband acts as the connection between the girl and her in-laws. I have shown the relation between a newly married couple in a joint-family scenario.

Men will start being just men even after the marriage, only few people turn into husbands (pelli aina tarvatha konthamandi magaalle mogullu gaa maaratharu). I tried to explain this point in a genuine way without missing the cinematic aspect of it.

How much portion of the film has hero as bachelor?
They get married in the interval. Hence the first half deals with bachelorhood and second half deals with the post-marital life.

You were a bachelor, then fell in love, got married to your love and now you are a father. You have traveled through most of the curve and you made a movie tiled Mogudu. Are there any of your real life experiences and personal incidents incorporated in the movie?
I have drawn inspirations from my own life. 50% of Gopichand’s characterization belongs to me.

Rajendra Prasad is doing father role in a hero-based film for the first time. How did you convince him?
My second film as an assistant director was Preminchi Choodu. The shooting of this film was done after the release of Preminchu Pelladu and before the release of Ladies Tailor. However, Preminchi Choodu was never released. He took a liking to me since then. He said that he will do a character role in my films after seeing the characterizations in my movies. In this film, you will see an aged Rajendra Prasad with his typical/original cinematic style. He is like another hero in Mogudu.

You have signed Kalyani Malik first and then shifted to a new music director?
Kalyani Malik couldn’t tolerate my torture, hence I had to seek another music director. Babu Shankar is a noted ad-film maker from Chennai. He has directed over 500 ads. He is also a music composer and producer of these ads. He is a great fan of Ilayaraja like me. He is extremely passionate about the music and plays piano and guitar excellently. He has sent a CD of his compositions through a common friend and I liked his work. He has composed 7 songs of different varieties. He has good grip on re-recording as well.

Bujji is a man of mass taste and you are a class director. How did you guys gel?
He might look like a mass man, but deep down he has class taste. He concentrated on budgeting and logistics and left the creative work to me. He has nice judgment. He suggested me about length problem and possible censor objection in a few scenes, I obliged his requests as I believe in his judgment. He is a good producer to work with.

All the actors who worked with you have got better mileage in your movies. They become better actors in your direction. How do you prepare your actors?
A lot of thought and techniques goes into it. I do write a 8-page character analysis form for leads in my movie. I ask my actors to fill them. Then I give them a few real life references to understand what I want from them. I create a comfort zone. During this process, the actor gets connected to his character and imbibes the traits. Once I feel that he/she is ready, I go to the sets. I always make sure that I create a comfort zone for my actors. The spirit and willingness of actors will help me getting the best out of them.

I am against shooting scenes shot by shot. There is a 300 feet length emotional scene that involves several major characters of Mogudu. I made them do rehearsal once and then shot the entire scene continuously. It came out really well on the screen. I feel that continuity of emotion will miss if you bifurcate that scene into shots and shoot them separately.

Comfort of actors is extremely important. There is a shot in Mogudu where Tapsee has to do an emotional scene with glycerin on. Eyes do burn when you put glycerin on. I made sure that the shot is taken within seconds after Tapsee put the glycerin on.

Do you watch films of other directors?
I make it a point to watch films of sensible directors like Sekhar Kammula, Chandra Sekhar Yeleti, Krish, Srikanth Addala, Bommarillu Bhaskar and Ravi Babu. They have innovative style in storytelling. Lot of thought and technique goes into their movies.

What are your future projects?
I have committed a film each with Yellow Flowers banner (Ramesh Puppala) and Bommarillu vaari banner (YVS Chowdary). Both these projects may be done simultaneously. Cast and crew details are yet to be finalized.

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