No reference to Power Star, says Sai Dharam Tej

Thursday, August 11, 2016 - 18:00

Sai Dharam Tej is on a high after the release of 'Supreme'. As his second film this year releases this Saturday (Aug 13, 2016), the Mega hero is calm, but also admits that he is restless. Read on...

What is 'Thikka' about? Did you have reservations about going for a negative-sounding title?

The entire story takes place in a span of one day. Several characters come into the play through the day. 'Thikka' is apt for the story is what I felt when the director proposed it.

Was the title a conscious effort to bank on Pawan Kalyan's craze (read 'Nakkonchem thikkundi..' punch line from 'Gabbar Singh')? Is there any reference to Power Star in the movie?

It was not conscious. There is no reference to Power Star anywhere in the movie.

You are seen consuming alcohol more than a hero normally does in our films. What is about it?

The film begins with my character breaking-up with the heroine (Larissa Bonesi is the first female lead). Yes, my character drinks a lot in the movie. That's required by the script. He makes a mistake in an inebriated condition. Because of that, he comes to face several consequences. A chain of events are spaced within one day.

You are not an alcoholic in real life. How could you manage pulling off the role?

I followed the director's instructions. Besides, I also had discussions with Tagubothu Ramesh, who is famous for such acts even though he doesn't drink. He told me that he learnt the body language by observing his father.

After you gave the nod to act in 'Thikka', 'Pilla Nuvvu Leni Jeevitham' and 'Supreme' have raised your stature. Did the writer-director duo have to make any changes to the script in light of your changing image?

Not at all. It was kept the same for the most part. Only that we added a few more comedy scenes. The movie is an entertainer first. Just because there is break-up and I am drinking alcohol, it doesn't mean that it's dull or sad. The scenes are hilarious.

How was it working with director Sunil Reddy and producer Rohin Reddy?

I have known Sunil anna for many years. He has excellent grip over technical aspects. As for Rohin Reddy garu, he told me during the first meeting itself that he won't compromise on quality. I told him he doesn't need to assure me of that as I trust him.

It's rumoured that the budget raised through the roof...

The budget is not too high. We effectively managed the budget without, at the same time, compromising anywhere.

How do you see the competition in the industry?

I don't think about all that. I just do my work sincerely.

Who are your biggest critics?

My parents. My mother keeps saying me that I should have done this and that thing better. At times, I tell her, 'Amma, chalu aapu' (Mom, stop it). (Laughs). Her intention is to prod me to get better every time.

Is your brother too going to become an actor?

He is too involved in studies as of now. He is doing double Masters.

What's your feeling about getting to act in a Krishna Vamsi film ('Nakshatram')? We heard that your character gets killed. Is it true?

I am feeling very lucky. It's a kind of dream come true. I am playing a 20-minute cameo. I have been told nothing about the story or my part. It's news to me that my character gets killed. (Smiles).

When is 'Akathayi' going on floors?

(Looks surprised). Who said the title is 'Akathayi'? I was not told. (Smiles). I think the title has been registered by someone else. Why cause a controversy by having such a title? Gopichand Malineni is planning to take the film on floors from the 20th.

A film with Kalyan Ram and another with Gautham Menon is speculated in the media. What about them?

I am in talks for the film with Kalyan Ram. Things will become clearer in the coming weeks. As for Gautham Menon's film, it's at an elementary stage and I can't say anything about it at this point of time.