How is 'Ajay' faring at the box office?
It is superb. Puneeth Rajkumar is sure to hit 100 from this film also. All over Karnataka 75 prints of 'Ajay' is returning good returns. The audio sale is also tremendous. I am safe and very comfortable. In some of the interiors in UFO technology this film is released. Producer and viewers point of view the film is very convincing.
Did you expect the success?
I always live on hope and do disciplined work. This is of course a tough film. We traveled various places in Karnataka to shoot. I have consumed maximum of time. This is expensive in money wise as well as in consumption of days. I am receiving letters, e-mails and phone calls from the audience. There was very good vibrations while making this film. Puneeth Rajkumar, Prakash Rai, Nazer, Sumitra have worked very hard. The technicians from small to big had one thing in their mind that 'Ajay' should come out well. The third version is also on a winning spree. It has really proved good in the box office. Puneeth is like his father. He is very simple and humble with lot of consciousness in his work. Success is a collective effort.
You thought only Puneeth Rajkumar for this film?
Yes. No other star struck me. It is in the same case with my next film 'Sirivantha'. Only Dr.Vishnuvardhana suits immaculately for the film. He is doing it. When I saw 'Gilli' and 'Okkadu' the right hero in Kannada with same grit and determination is Puneeth I felt. When I asked him to do the film he agreed and saw only half of the original.
You have any celebration after 50 days of 'Ajay'?
I am having Kabbadi tournament. It is called 'Ajay' cup in all the districts the tournaments will be held. In the final match Puneeth Rajkumar will be playing the Kabbaddi match in one of the teams. This game is the highlight of the film 'Ajay'.
Why do you go after remakes is a repeatedly asked question for you….
I give you fresh answer for this. The expenditure I make on remake rights purchase I have done here on original subjects. I have given opportunities for many persons in Karnataka to come out with subjects. Most of them failed to convince me on the subject. Sometimes the remake rights are cheaper for me. Those who say that they can give one story a day or have the story bank are not having the commercial bent of mind required for the film. You tell me about my 'Yuge Yuge' that is all set now made by Nagabharana.
When 'Yuge Yuge' is going on the floors?
After 'Sirivantha' released sometime in September end. More than 10 sitting I had with Nagabharana, Dr.Vishnu and Upendra. Now the subject has taken a final shape. 'Yuge Yuge' will be a mega film in my career. With two top stars Dr.Vishnu and Upendra in lead roles the industry is also very anxious.
You have some emotional attachment to 'Sirivantha' it seems?
Yes. My wife forced me to see the Telugu film 'Aa Nalaguru' on the way to Kateelu Durgaparameshwari temple. Without my knowledge I cried. I asked the driver to stop the vehicle and sat alone on a rock and recollected the whole film and cried once again. There is 'truth' in the film. This film has won the Golden Nandi award in Andhra Pradesh. As I told you earlier it is only Dr.Vishnu who suits the role aptly for 'Sirivantha'. Actress Shruthi is another fine actress and director S.Narayan is able director for this type of film.
You bring the remake rights. But it is someone else who is copying and spoiling your investment?
This is a wrong trend often heard in Kannada. In the case of 'Jeyam' remake the producer came to me and told that he is not aware that his film is remake and he depended on director who made this fumble. I kept quiet without doing anything. It is the producer who is affected with my litigation.
Do you have any other projects on hand?
I have one original subject getting ready for Shivarajkumar and another one for Darshan.
You have come up with a huge set for 'Sirivantha'?
Yes. This has been erected in our Studio. 50 percent of the shooting will be held here. After this film shooting the same set can be used for other films also. This has been designed with adjustable system.