'Want to be known as a complete entertainer'
...says Sudigaali Sudheer, who has stepped into the big world of films after his successful stint in television
With his flair for acting and being clear about his goals from a young age, Sudheer Anand Bayana, popularly known as Sudigali Sudheer, showcased his versatility as a comedian, television host, and lead actor. Ahead of Gaalodu, a romantic action entertainer, Sudheer talks to Cinema Express about his career, goals, and journey in the tinsel town.
When did you first realise you wanted to be an actor?
I am a huge fan of Chiranjeevi garu, Rajinikanth garu and Brahmanandam garu. I used to imitate Rajini's mannerisms, Brahmanandam's expressions, and Chiranjeevi's acting style and dance to his songs during school events or functions and won many prizes. As a child, it never occurred to me to be an actor, but my mother always wanted to see me as one. After class 8, I made up my mind and enrolled in the drama group of our school. Since then there has been no looking back. I understood that acting is nothing but observing, behaving, and conveying the seemingly most complex emotions with an air of casualness. I don't have a style of my own and I am a mix-and-match of all my favourite stars.
Have you met any of your idols?
I met Chiranjeevi garu when he visited the sets of Sardar Gabbar Singh (2016). When Pawan Kalyan garu was introducing everyone on the set, I was surprised to see Chiranjeevi garu calling me by name and saying, "TV lo kummesthunnav." At that moment, I felt that my dream had been fulfilled and I can happily go back to my hometown (Vijayawada) and do some other work. I also vividly remember the day Chiranjeevi garu came to bless me at my housewarming ceremony, and gifted clothes to my parents, which still remain unstitched as we value them as a treasure.
What is Gaalodu all about?
It's the story of an aimless youngster, who is tormented by horrid luck and ends up in a spate of problems. The film is an extension of my boy-next-door image and will have me perform some high-voltage action sequences. I would describe Gaalodu as a fun-filled commercial entertainer with some good twists and turns.
Why have you chosen such a sarcastic yet negative name as your film's title?
I asked my director Pulicherla Rajasekhar Reddy a similar question. He said Gaalodu was the first script he wrote even before we collaborated for Software Sudheer. He wanted to make this film first, but things didn't work out and we ended up doing Software Sudheer, which had another title before I gave my nod. Be it Sudheer or Gali, he believes that the audience would connect well with my name and hence choose the title. That way, only Sudi has been left and on a lighter note, I asked him if he wants to keep Sudi as the title of our next film (laughs).
What challenges did you face in your career?
I always want to entertain the audience and win their hearts. I am currently content with my career and want to help people who are in need. I pray to God to give me the strength to help as many people as possible.
What is the response from the audience like?
It was tremendous and way beyond our expectations. Until now, we have been promoting the film only on social media and released the teaser without any hype. But the audience gave a lot of love and appreciation to us and made the trailer viral. The excitement and vibe around the film have been positive and I am hoping to receive a similar response once the film releases on November 18.
How comfortable are you in the role of a lead actor?
That's the biggest task. I always think of the well-being of my producer and my distributors as they bet money on us. I don't want any of my films to incur losses. I came from the small screen and there is always an alternative to fall back on for bread and butter. But if my producer loses money, where would he go? I don't mind if my film doesn't break records, but I want it to recover the investment failing which a producer cannot make more films and cannot afford to give a chance to another actor like me. I want all my films to do well for the sake of the people associated with them.
Any plans to direct a film?
I want to be known as a complete entertainer. I don't want to confine myself as a lead actor and I am open to taking up characters that are substantial. However, I don't have any plans to direct or produce a film. If I get a chance, I want to encourage new actors or technicians through my films.
What are your upcoming films?
I have completed shooting for a thriller titled Calling Sahasra. The post-production works are underway and we are planning to release it early next year. I haven't signed a new film yet and am in no hurry at all. I think it is best to choose my next film once Gaalodu and Calling Sahasra clear the box office test.