OscaRRR comes home
An elated team RRR reacts to a historic win at the 95th Academy Awards
One can confidently say that no other Monday morning in the near future will come remotely close to yesterday's vibrancy and jubilance. The historic win of RRR’s Naatu Naatu instantly lit up the spirit of the Indian film fraternity and crores of passionate film buffs across the nation. It is a win that every Indian cinephile will dearly hold on to for years going forward. The journey of the foot-tapping dance number began as an instant chartbuster featuring two charming stars and culminated in global recognition. The countryside roots of this MM Keeravaani composition, penned by Chandrabose, only beautify the song’s cultural importance and the Oscar award cements the song’s significance in Indian history—one might argue it is as defining as the 1983 Cricket World Cup win.
Both RRR and Naatu Naatu, over the course of their journey, transcended boundaries of form and became an introduction to Telugu cinema and Telugu film music to many. And the joy of those who contributed to the creation of the landmark song is tangible during this defining moment. Here’s how artists who are creatively associated with Naatu Naatu reacted to the win:
Jr NTR, Actor:
“I cannot find the words to express my elation right now. This is not just a win for RRR but for India as a country. I believe this is just the beginning. Showing us how far Indian cinema can go. Congratulations to Keeravaani garu and Chandrabose garu. Of course, none of this would have been possible without a master storyteller called Rajamouli and the audiences who showered us with all the love. I would also like to congratulate the team of The Elephant Whisperers on their win today bringing another Oscar to India.”
Ram Charan, Actor:
"RRR is and will always remain the most special film of our lives and of Indian cinema history. I can’t thank everyone enough for manifesting the Oscar Award. It still feels like I am living in a dream. Thank you all for the unstoppable support and love. SS Rajamouli garu and MM Keeravani garu are the most precious gems of our Indian film industry. Thank you both for giving me the opportunity to be a part of this masterpiece.
Naatu Naatu is an emotion across the globe. Thank you lyricist Chandrabose Garu, singers Rahul Sipligunj and Kaala Bhairava and choreographer Prem Rakshith for bringing together this emotion. To my co-star Tarak—thank you, brother! I hope to dance with you and create records again. Thank you Alia Bhatt for being the sweetest co-star. This award belongs to every Indian actor, technician and filmgoer. My heartfelt thanks to all the fans across the world for all the love and support. This is our country’s win!"
Rahul Sipligunj, Singer:
"The oscar award goes to Naatu Naatu from RRR. Congratulations to my guru Shri MM Keeravaani sir on winning the Oscar and making the whole of India proud. He believed in me and made me to hold this prestigious award. Thank you, The Academy. Thank you, Keeravaani sir."
MM Keeravaani, Music Composer:
"It feels like I’m on top of the world. I’m very proud of my country and the whole team who dedicated their energy to this song. I feel blessed to bag this recognition for my culture, motherland and my film industry. I feel this is just the beginning of the western world focusing on Indian music and Asian music, which is long due. I am happy that it [the win] is opening doors for the world to embrace our culture and music hereafter."
Natarajan Ramji, Line Producer:
I am speechless and overwhelmed at 'Naatu Naatu' winning the Oscar. This is a historic moment for Indian cinema. To have our cinema reach this pinnacle of global success is truly an act of god’s will and providence set in motion. I contribute all of this success to Rajamouli. I worked with him earlier in Baahubali: The Beginning (2015), where we recreated the snowy landscapes of Mahishmati in Bulgaria. We later went on to recreate a colonial palace from 1920s Britain in Ukraine for RRR. We worked very hard to shoot Naatu Naatu outside the Presidential Palace in Kiev, Ukraine in the middle of a raging pandemic, amidst innumerable logistical challenges. This could not have been possible without the help of our RRR team and their counterparts in Ukraine. We also received massive support from veteran Ukrainian producer Anna Palenchuk and Vitali Klitschko, the mayor of Kiev. I am grateful to have been a part of Rajamouli’s journey and vision.
(With inputs from Abhilasha Cherukuri)