'Anant Nag was the silver lining of Hottegagi Genu Battegagi'
...says director Narendra Babu, who is grateful to have got a mentor in Anant Nag for his upcoming film, the title of which is a popular Kannada proverb
Anant Nag has been a pillar of support for director Narendra Babu’s film, Hottegagi Genu Battegagi, that also features Radhika Chetan in the lead. The senior actor even suggested the film’s title, the director tells Cinema Express. “I initially thought we should go with Kallu Sakkare Kolliro as the title of the film. But after he read the script, he felt that Hottegagi Genu Battegagi was better suited taking into account the storyline,” says Narendra.
Hottegagi Genu Battegagi is a commercial entertainer which looks at generation gap in the workplace. “The story revolves around a senior person (played by Anant Nag), who works with a popular publication house. Under some trying circumstances he joins an IT company. He gets a culture shock at the workplace when he hears about the idea of live-in relationships, popular among the younger generation. This difference in thoughts and ideas is the theme of the film. Generation gap is a timeless issue. We’re exploring how a principled man accepts the IT world,” says the director, adding, “While the film has dialogue, some portions are expressed just through silence.”
Interestingly, Radhika plays Anant Nag's boss in the film. “The relationship that the two share is also something to watch out for,” the filmmaker says.
According to Narendra Babu, Anant Nag was a major influence on the sets and the director feels lucky to have gotten the support of a man of his stature. “Especially, during the 18-day shoot at Mysuru, every day turned out to be a grand rehearsal for the team, Anant sir used to ensure that the actors were on the spot at 7 am, and he'd explain to each of them the scenes before they faced the camera. He stood by our film in every way-- from giving the title to roping in producer Jayanna to distributing the film,” says Narendra.
Anant apparently put his heart and soul into the making of the film. So much so, he even fine-tuned the script. “I call it a boon when an actor with 50 years experience in the industry, comes forward to shape the film. I am simply speechless,” the director says.
However, at no point, Narendra says, did he feel insecure. Instead, he was overwhelmed with the senior actor’s support. “Cinema is a collective effort and not made for academic purposes nor for film festivals. When you want to make a film for the audience, you can’t be inflexible. Anant sir’s entry into the picture is the silver lining of the film,” he says.
The film, which comprises mostly theatre artistes, has music by Ramachandra Hadappa and cinematography by PKH Doss.