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'Masala Has Glamorized Action': Venkatesh [Interview]

IndiaGlitz [Monday, November 11, 2013]

It's a coincidence that Venkatesh and Vintage starts with the same letter 'V'... Or is it... Like Vintage, Venkatesh also got more matured, lovable and grew in quality of performance with time and after about three decades of acting for the camera, he stands as one of the most successful heroes in Telugu film history.

Venky, like his favorite cricketer Vengsarkar, is also a slow and fickle starter. It takes a little time for him to come into his form and once he is, the conversation grows so personal, intimate, humorous and deep. In a pressmeet he's arranged to discuss and disclose the details of his 14th November release 'Masala', he says 'Masala' is probably the simplest, most hilarious and funniest film of recent times.

He also talks about his co-star Ram who is younger than his screen experience, his straight second with Anjali, the nuances of a multi-starrer, his innocent and at times stupid 'Balram' character, parallel projects, his son Arjun and life in general. He grew elegant and eloquent as it cruised along and was a treat listening to him.

Excerpts from the conversation...

About 'Masala':

'Masala' is energy. Masala is spice. And the film is full of entertainment, a healthy and clean entertainment. The film's built on the premise that audience are simple and natural. So, the laughter the movie generates will be more genuine. So, the film is simple, not taxing on your brain, not highly ambitious and with a storyline which is made clear in the beginning itself. My comic roles have been successful, especially with Vijaya Bhaskar Nuvvu Naku Nachchav and Mallishwari and I am sure we have something of that standard in store.

Balram Is Lovable...

This is a first time character for me. The look, the innocence of the character, however rough and gaudy he looks outside he is pretty sensitive inside. I did the role coz I am not getting such roles in single hero scripts. All in all, Balram is a lovable character with his quirky body language and crazy English... All the qualities have come out well and I think there is a positive buzz among the fans about this.

Ram Is Quite Sharp...

Ram's role is high on energy and both the shades of his character are emerged out of a situation, an issue he has to solve and he lands in trouble. Ram has done an extremely brilliant performance in both his characters.

Ram The Co-Star...

The attitude about the project and involvement in the production, that made both me and Ram enter the skins of the characters and story was easier. I am sure Ram enjoyed working with me too since this is a new and challenging character for him. He is a very quick learner and especially sharp in comedy. And with Vijaya Bhaskar at the helm, who is fantastic hand in dealing with humor, the shooting was a cake walk for both of us.

Terrific Supporting Cast...

All the supporting characters like JP in my assistant's role, with his own timing of butler English, Ali's role of Ram's friend, Kovai Sarala, MS Narayana... all of them added their bit to enhance the entertainment value.

Glamorized Action...

One remarkable thing about Masala is that the action episodes will be loved by the family audiences too. Without any violence, no bloodshed, no huge setups, the glamorized action episodes truly merge into the sequence and create a laugh riot by their own. The presence of two heroes also add a lot.

Great Mix Of Songs...

Sound tracks are a great mix of soothing melodies and foot tapping rhythm. My personal favorite is the duet between me and Anjali which we shot in picturesque locations in Japan.

Good Second Outing With Anjali...

Anjali has a simple uncomplicated role and since our pair has already hit a chord, we thought we will continue with her in this film too. She is looking gorgeous and has done an elegant job.

Good Association With Sravanthi...

We did 'Nuvvu Naaku Nachchav' in association with Sravanthi and it was a successful venture. Now that Ram is also involved, we thought it makes more sense and revived the combination.

It Ends With Multi-starrer Tag...

You cannot compare SVSC and Masala. The comparison ends with both being multi-starrers. While SVSC is all about the beauties of relations, bonding between brothers and other family members, Masala is a nonstop laugh riot.

Comedy Is The Most Challenging...

Comedy is the most challenging thing to depict on screen. I was a natural comic guy at school and used to imitate Hollywood comedians like Jerry Lewis and Telugu actors like Allu Ramalingaiah. In fact, whenever I am to do a comic act, I used to remember him and then just reproduce. And whenever the director wants me to do a second take I was scared with a fear that I wouldn't be able to repeat the same again. So, comedy is like an ocean and every one has his or her own style, timing and delivery. I particularly admire the standup comedians, especially in the Hindi circuits for their mind blowing spontaneity in performing for LIVE TV or thousands of audiences in a show. Hats off to them.

I Have Both Remake & Straight Hits...

I do any story which is good and available. I always treated Films as a business. So, whenever I had a good original script or a remake available on the block, I took it up and went on. One, the role should be suitable for me and two, it should be a minimum guarantee for the producer. So, I accepted many remake opportunities. In fact not just me but every hero did this but only because I had a better success rate with remakes, I was under the lens. So, remake business is always there and thriving. Look at Salman, the one reason for his thumping come back is remakes. He is right now waiting for the next big thing from South to happen.

Happy About The First 100 Crore Telugu Film...

The striking thing about 'Attarintiki Daredi' is that the plot is set in the first frame. After that, it was easy for the director. Many scenes that could have been treated differently, were given a simple yet fresh angle so, the result. If it crosses 100 Crores, as it is touted to be, I am happy for the film. It has to happen and that's how industry always evolves.

Arjun Is Just Ten...

No plans to introduce my son Arjun into acting. He is ten years old and he is growing on his own terms. The focus starts now and I, as a father am trying to give him an outlook outside the academics, exposing him to the physical, mental and aesthetic beings of human life.

Feel Proud To Be Part Of Suresh...

I feel proud to be one of the two kids of the emblem of Suresh Productions, one of the longest standing production house doing business across regions, languages and sectors for the past 50 years. The credit goes to my father who built it singlehandedly without anybody's help, in spite of great hardships striking him, he came back and strongly too. Then my brother who supported him with a fantastic eye and acumen for business. I cannot a credit at all but for being a part of the chain.

Projects N Projects...

We are working on Krishna Vamsi's story. He is working very hard since he also needs a good family film to get him back to the groove. The bound script will be ready soon and we will hit the floors once we are satisfied. My other project is Maruthi's 'Radha' which is produced by DVV Danaiah. Nayana Tara is the lead and it's a clean entertainer. I am also working on another script.

Audiences Are Evolving...

Though my character is cheated by Ram's, I don't think fans will have a problem with that. I always ask the fans to look at the film, not single out me or their respective heroes which only brings chaos into their minds and plays a spoilsport. Even in SVSC, Mahesh calls me 'Rey' very casually and many didn't feel it odd coz they were cruised into the story and the characters easily. Multi starrers are not about a shot for him and shot for me. It's about a story that happens with two guys instead of one protagonist.

Tremors N Quakes Are Not New...

I lived in San Husen which was a highly earth quake prone zone. I experienced at least four small and medium sized quakes or tremors when I was there for two years. So, shooting in Japan didn't bother me.

Shocked With The News...

AVS was a very nice person, always helpful. I t came as a shocking news though he was not keeping well for some time. I convey my condolences for his family and may his soul rest in peace.

Piracy Is A Larger Issue...

Piracy has been reduced to some extent of late but the situation is still grim. In my opinion the problem lies with the audiences. Curbing Piracy is going to be an uphill task as long as the end consumer feels it's convenient and continues to search for the availability. Only when they feel it's wrong, it can be eradicated. I can only request the audiences to watch it on the legal platforms, not succumb to the pirated versions.

Rey To Hit The Screens For Pongal

Masala Wallpapers:

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Venkatesh Wallpapers:

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