Stepping out of his comfort zone
Naga Chaitanya on his new role and upcoming movie Rarandoi Veduka Chooddam
Actor Naga Chaitanya, in an exclusive chat with City Express, opens up on his forthcoming release Rarandoi Veduka Chooddam, how working with director Kalyan Krishna helped him step out of his comfort zone, and his upcoming marriage.
What drew you to Rarandoi Veduka Chuddam?
I think it all started after I saw Soggade Chinni Nayana. I really liked how Kalyan presented dad, and wrote his character. I have always wanted to do a commercial film. My previous films, even though some did very well, they had limited reach. So I have always been planning to take the next step, take the commercial route because this is what an actor needs in the long run as it’s easier to connect with everyone. I liked Kalyan’s idea of commercial cinema; it’s not too raw and at the same he presents his characters well, with a little bit of class. He came up with this love story and it involves two families unlike my previous films where the conflict is just between the boy and girl. I really liked the way he packaged the film for me.
You had recently said this film was a learning experience. In what sense did you mean?
It really helped me to come out of my comfort zone. My body language in the film is very different; full of energy and it’s not subtle or logical. It’s a little over the top for the sake of entertainment whenever needed. But I had to ensure I didn’t overdo it and make a fool of myself. It wasn’t an easy character to pull off. I learnt quite a lot from Kalyan because a lot of the sensibilities I drew for the character was based on how he perceived the character. Going by the promos, it looks like the film is cut from the same cloth of your father’s Ninne Pelladata (1996). I think dad had put the seed in Kalyan, and I guess he wanted Ninne Pelladata to be used as a reference point. I like how the film has come out. It’s not got too much of action and at the same time it’s real, ticking off all the Telugu nativity. If audiences sense the flavour of Ninne Pelladata while watching, I don’t think they’d be wrong.
Was it easier to work with Kalyan since he had already worked with your father and I believe you must have been aware of his work?
The trust factor, which is very important between an actor and a director, was already there and it helped me a lot to embrace the project. Getting into a very different zone, I definitely needed to trust the director because I was going in blind. In others films, I relate a lot to the characters I essay and I can portray them the way I want. In Rarandoi, I was completely going with the director’s vision and what dad had in mind. Watching Kalyan work in Annapurna Studios over the last one year while he was shooting for Soggade; it definitely helped in working together. Your film has an exclusive song for the heroine (Rakul Preet). It’s not every day we get to see that in Telugu cinema.
How do you like your heroines to be portrayed?
I think the heroines are as important as the heroes. When I look at a film, I don’t go by the screen time of my character. It’s important that a film has to work on the whole and the emotions have to come together, especially if it’s a love story the heroine needs to be given equal importance.
All eyes seem are on your marriage with Samantha in October. Do you mind being asked about it all the time?
I know all those who have been asking me now…they won’t be asking me next year. I’m enjoying this attention, this phase, because it won’t happen again.