Prashanth Neel: KGF Chapter 2 will feel fresh whenever it releases
KGF Chapter 2 is undoubtedly one of the most-anticipated films in Indian cinema right now. Despite the multiple roadblocks that have hit the film’s release, director Prashanth Neel is still excited about the film and is using the delays in the best way possible for the film. “The time that we have is not the time we desired, but we have it, and we are making the best use of it. I cannot change the story. However, whatever we have, we are working out to bring the best, and our post-production work is in full swing,” says Prashanth, who celebrated his birthday on June 4. Apart from KGF Chapter 2 starring Yash, the director is also gearing up to resume shoot for his next film, the Prabhas-starrer Salaar. “I even got time to write some scripts. We are doing a handful of projects with Hombale Films and discussions are on,” he adds.
“How can we ask people to come to theatres?”
Prashanth says that the entire world is facing the pandemic together, and when there is death heard and seen everywhere, a film being delayed isn’t exactly a top priority. “It makes sense to be upset or lose patience if there are shooting delays, artists don’t turn up, etc... But this is not such a situation,’’ says the director and further explains, “We are living in a fantasy world. We are part of the entertainment, and we don’t come under necessity. We are only a luxury. If we get frustrated and lose patience, it will bear no fruit. The world is going through a much bigger crisis,” he says. “Like every individual, we are also taking care of ourselves, and our families' health, and taking all measures to ensure the virus doesn’t affect us. How can we ask people to come to theatres? It is an extraordinary situation for everybody in the world, and nobody is spared. Either we all erase the 2 years from our lives or if you want to think positive, consider this as a break.”
"KGF Chapter 2 will be fresh, at any point of release"
Fans across India and the world have been looking forward to watching the Yash-starrer, and Prashanth says that the film will be afresh at any given point of release. The story is universal, and since it is a period movie, and not in tune with the present, it will automatically feel fresh, whenever it is released.
"True form of cinema is storytelling"
The production house, Hombale Films, came up with a surprise teaser for his birthday. In the teaser, he was tagged as a ‘Pioneer Filmmaker’. It also said that KGF is just the beginning and Prashanth would go a long way from here. Responding to such high praise, Prashanth says, “I am a storyteller like everybody else, and if I have a different way of storytelling that people are liking, then it is something that comes naturally to me, and it is not forced. Even when I’m exploring my capabilities in different languages, it is all about telling a story.” He further adds that telling a story to the audience is the sole purpose of filmmaking. “There are many forms of storytelling, however, cinema has somehow succeeded to attract a larger audience. People look at it as entertainment, but the true form of cinema is storytelling. Personally, my growth will be only with the different stories I wish to tell, and at any given point, I wouldn’t be worried about the canvas of my story. It can be big or small,” he says.
"It is nobody’s concern to ask or know my pay package"
One of the other facets that constantly keeps Prashanth in the news is his pay package. “At the end of the day, it is a very personal matter. Everything from my technicians, my artists, and the whole project including the budget of the film can be just speculation. The moment you give up all that, then there is very little mystery left. I don’t believe that I am the highest-paid filmmaker right now, and more importantly, I don’t think it should be something that is discussed in the first place,” he says.
"I am not in a position to pick and choose anybody"
Prashanth began his career by directing Sriimurali in his debut film, Ugramm. Then, he directed Yash in the KGF films. Now, he is directing Prabhas in Salaar, and is set to direct NTR Jr next. Does he have a wishlist of sorts, considering he is the toast of Indian cinema right now? “There is no wishlist. I am not in a position to pick and choose anybody. They are all established actors and have been in this industry for at least a decade before I came in. So they are seniors to me in terms of profession, and literally, they dictate the projects. They have given me this opportunity and they are all fine actors. Some of these projects, which I want to make on a bigger scale, is something that can be achieved only by associating with these stars.