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Chitchat with Suresh Kondeti
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Suresh Kondeti - Editor of Santosham film weekly magazine and the producer of latest hit Premiste - is a dream chaser. Like everyone else, he is attracted towards print media and film industry for its wide reach and the glamour that it offers. His recently released debut film Premisteis doing extremely well at box office and drawing huge crowds. Here is chitchat with him -

10th November 2005

The making of Suresh Kondeti
I was born in Vedangipalem (3 k.m. from Palakollu) and completed my 10th class in Junnuru. I attended the college in Palakollu. Palakollu is the birthplace of many famous cine personalities like Dasari Narayana Rao, Kodi Rama Krishna, Ravi Raja Pinisetty, Allu Rama Lingaiah, Relangi etc. It is but natural for people to get inspired by these great cine personalities and get attracted to the glamour field.

My grandfather Kondeti Subba Rao was very famous stage artist in Palakollu area. He used to play the lady character of Chandramati (w/o of Satya Harischandra) in Satya Harischandra stage plays. When I was a kid, I was once forced to play the role of Lohit Das during Mukkoti Ekadasi nights. But I made my brother (who looks like me) do that role and everybody thought that I did it and started appreciating me. That was when I realized the power of glamour and I decided that when I would grow up I would be associated with films.

My father was a bank employee and he wanted me to do a white collar job. But I had more inclination towards arts and I use to do artwork of film stars when I was in my teens. I used to bunk school and go to cinema halls to watch all kinds of films.

Once, I got an opportunity to meet hero Sobhan Babu and took a snap. My friend Ravindra Varma sent it to Swathy magazine without my permission. There was a special column then in Swathi which was dedicated to photos of fans with the film stars. The people around me used to give me special importance because my photo was published in that magazine. That is when I realized the importance of print media.

After I grew up I got a job as an Ad Executive at Krishna Patrika in which I started a separate edition called Krishna Chitra specially focusing on films. I started doing film reporting and on the eve of Superstar Krishna completing 300 films with 'Telugu Veera Levara', I came up with a special edition on Krishna. For that special edition, I decided to take and print the opinions of film celebrities on Krishna. When I contacted Chiranjeevi's office to take his opinions, they informed me that he went to Switzerland for songs shooting. I got hold of his number at Switzerland and called him. Chiranjeevi said that he would write his opinions and fax it to my office. I then published the fax copy as it is bearing Chiranjeevi's signature on it. That gesture of Chiranjeevi and my ability to secure Chiranjeevi's opinion in such a less time created sensation in media circles at that time. Chiranjeevi recognized my zeal for journalism and encouraged me a lot. During that time I also acted in couple of films like Rama Bantu and Nalla Poosalu.

Later on, I joined Vaartha newspaper. I worked really hard during my days at Vaartha and my day used to start at 4 am and end at midnight. As time went by, I also started distributing films in West Godavari region. I got lucky enough to distribute hit films like Student No.1, Idiot, Santosham, Tagore and Shankardada MBBS. I bought the Santosham film with the idea of starting a film magazine with the profits made out of it. I also requested Dr. KL Narayana (producer of Santosham) to give me permission to name my magazine as 'Santosham'. That is how Santosham started and it is currently one of the best film magazines around with finest print quality and high quality content.

It was Nagarjuna who said during the 1st anniversary of Santosham that I should also start Film Awards ceremony. As per the wish of Nagarjuna I started Santosham Film Awards to give awards to Best Film, Artists and Technicians every year. During the Santosham Awards function, Chiranjeevi expressed that I should also enter film production. With these words of inspiration from Chiranjeevi I decided to enter film production.

NV Prasad was holding remake/dubbing rights of Kaadhal with him. I knew him well as fellow distributor and I requested him to sell me the dubbing rights on 30th of July. On 31st of July, he agreed to give me dubbing rights. On 1st of August, I registered the title of Premiste with AP Film Chamber. On 2nd August 2005, both Chiranjeevi and Nagarjuna announced my arrival in film production with 'Premiste' during the 2nd Santosham Film Awards ceremony.

I bought the dubbing rights of Premiste for 45 lakhs from NV Prasad. As a token of gratitude, I gave him Ceded distribution rights of Premiste free of cost. It cost me over a crore of rupees to do the dubbing and promotion. Premiste emerged as instant winner at Box Office by giving the buyers lots of profits.

I am planning to do much bigger films very soon.

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