Janhvi Kapoor on foray into South cinema: It makes me feel closer to my mom

The Mr. & Mrs. Mahi actor will make her Telugu cinema debut with Jr NTR-starrer Devara
A still from Devara
A still from Devara

Working in the south film industry makes her feel closer to her late superstar mother Sridevi, said actor Janhvi Kapoor, who is set to make her Telugu cinema debut with Jr NTR-starrer Devara.

The actor will star in another Telugu film with Ram Charan in his 16th movie.

Janhvi, known for Hindi films such as Dhadak, Gunjan Saxena: The Kargil Girl and Mili , said it was the "right time" to make her South cinema debut.

"Somehow it makes me feel closer to my mom, to be in that environment, as well as to hear and speak in that language. It just felt like it was the right time, I felt I was gravitating towards it,” she said.

"Mom has such a history with the families of NTR sir and Ram Charan sir, it's my honour that I'm able to work with both these extremely talented actors,' the actor, whose latest release is Mr. & Mrs. Mahi, told PTI.

Sridevi, who died in 2018 in Dubai at the age of 54, started her career as a child actor with M A Thirumugham's Tamil film Thunaivan (1969). While the late actor was fluent in Tamil, her mother tongue was Telugu.

The veteran star shared screen space with Charan's father Chiranjeevi in movies like Jagadeka Veerudu Athiloka, Ranuvu Veeran, SP Parsuram and Mosagadu, among others. She co-starred with Telugu cinema veteran NT Rama Rao, grandfather of Jr NTR, in several films such as Vetagaadu, Satyam Shivam and Anuraga Devata.

Sridevi also acted in films such as Simham Navvindi among others, which were produced by NTR Jr's father Nandamuri Harikrishna.

Janhvi said she has grown up watching South movies and admires the onscreen 'charisma' of actors.

“I've always been a fan of their cinema. I love their conviction with which they make films and the charisma that the actors hold. Not that we don't have charisma here, (but) there's a swagger, the way they portray their heroes, they romanticise their heroines. There's a specific flavour to Telugu, Tamil and Malayalam cinema; they are all so individual," she said.

"Dad has made so many remakes, so a big activity at home would be to watch Tamil and Telugu films. He was obsessed with buying their rights. It's been a big part of my upbringing to watch these films," the actor said, referring to her producer-father Boney Kapoor's filmography.

Mr. & Mrs. Mahi, also featuring Rajkummar Rao, released in theatres on May 31. The film, which has received a mixed response, is directed by Sharan Sharma and backed by Dharma Productions.

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