Komalee Prasad: I want to be known as an actor, not a star

The actor talks about her career goals, and charting her career in South Indian cinema, and more
Komalee Prasad: I want to be known as an actor, not a star

Komalee Prasad is not a conventional actor, and her versatility onscreen gives ample evidence of it. She is happy to have found a ground in Telugu cinema and climbing the ladder of success as an actor. The doctor-turned-actor is now looking forward to her next release, HIT: The Second Case, a murder mystery that has her play a cop. Written and directed by Sailesh Kolanu, the film tells the story of a cop Krishna Das (KD), who is out to catch the killer behind the brutal murder of a woman named Shraddha.

Komalee talks about the film, her experience of playing a cop, and her ambitions in an interview.


Tell us about how HIT: The Second Case came your way

Sailesh Kolanu approached me saying I have to play a serious cop named Varsha. Initially, I was surprised because I don't meet the physique and other criteria to play the part. However, Sailesh was impressed with my previous work and is confident that I can pull off this role with ease. His words have inspired me to get back in shape in a short time.

I had a great time playing this character, which has a backstory, a journey, and a proper meaning. Also, it is one role that runs parallel to the protagonist and I am sure all the women officers would relate to my character.

Besides physical transformation, what were the challenges that you faced while preparing for the character?

The real challenge lies in balancing feminine and masculine energies. There's a thin line between them and if we don't integrate them properly, our efforts won't be recognised. Adding to that, a lot of people assume that cops are not emotional and think that they don't have any feelings. It is not true. They are also human beings and the only thing is that they don't show emotions at a crime scene.  It is really tough to control emotions in public.

The story of HIT 2 seems to have an eerie similarity to the Shraddha Walker murder case.

Yes, it was a shocking coincidence. In fact, the case we were dealing with in the film is about a woman named Shraddha. Sailesh wrote the script of HIT 2 during the lockdown and by the time Shraddha Walker's horrific killing came to light, we had completed the shooting. I always thought that such crimes would only happen in films and never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that one day I would come across an incident like this in my life.

A section of people believe HIT 2 has taken violence to a new level

We know that cinema has become a wider medium of communication. I believe that filmmakers, who make films based on real-life crimes always want to educate people with their stories. The idea is only to showcase that criminals like these exist in our society. Films like these won't blow a story out of proportion, but try to be as realistic as possible without deviating from the core idea. Having said that, I am a huge fan of (the American director) David Fincher, a master of the murder mystery genre. I asked Sailesh if he was inspired by David Fincher's works and he said: 'no'. But I enjoyed working with Sailesh and would call him the 'David Fincher of Tollywood.'

How's your next film, Sasivadane, shaping up?

Sasivadane means a girl whose face resembles the moon. The film is set in Konaseema and the story revolves around a beautiful girl named Sasi and her boyfriend Raghava. We shot the film entirely in Konaseema, an oasis of enchanting beauty, peace, and tranquility. I think the beauty of Konaseema lies in its people, who are known for their hospitality, friendly demeanor, helping nature, and affection. We had a great time shooting over there.

How has your journey been so far in Tollywood?

I didn't have a cakewalk in the industry and I am yet to get recognition as an actor. I have realised that I should work really hard and focus on one step at a time. I am more conscious about the work I want to do and how I am known – I want to be known as an actor, not a star. I admire Anushka Shetty a lot and like her, I want people to remember me as a good human being. I want to earn respect over attention and prove my versatility.

What's next?

I am currently shooting for another film produced by Ravindra Benerjee Muppaneni of Colour Photo-fame and featuring Siddharth Rajkumar in the lead. I am playing a cheerful urban girl in the film. About 70 per cent of the film has already been completed and we are planning to complete the entire shoot by end of the year.

I am making my Tamil debut with a contemporary love story under the direction of Siva Ganesh, a former associate of Sudha Kongara. I am currently attending acting workshops under the supervision of Soori sir and also learning Tamil. The film will go on floors shortly.

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