Baahubali 2 is truly an international film: Prabhas
Prabhas, who refuses to be called an international star, is far less tensed than he was before the release of 'Baahubali-The Beginning'. In this interview, he talks about the April 28 release 'Baahubali-The Conclusion' in detail, also reveals about his next plans including 'Saaho'.
The audience are excited about finding why Kattappa killed Baahubali. What is in store?
If I were to tell you the reason now, you would ask many follow-up questions. It's how layered it is. The reason unfolds in about 20 scenes. The first question VV Vinayak wondered in 2015 was how come the movie became such a big hit although it had about ten unanswered questions. Why did Kattappa kill Baahubali is only one of the questions. Why and how Tamannah's character ended up being in the forest and a lot of questions were not unanswered. Yet the film became a blockbuster. May be, that's what the people liked. They liked the characters, characterizations, etc.
Rajamouli spent at least 15-20 days thinking how the story has to be separated into two parts. It was a tough one.
Playing which of the two characters was more difficult for you?
It was easier to play Shivudu because, having been brought up in an unregulated environment, he goes by his instinct. He doesn't know who Avanthika is and yet goes after her. He ends up in Mahismathi without knowing that his biological mother is actually in captive there. He lifts the Shiva Lingam when he wants to. On the other hand, Amarendra Baahubali is brought up in a contrasting environment and his responsibilities are bigger. He has to behave in a particular way.
Can you take us through how the film took birth?
Rajamouli did narrate to me a few stories at least 5-6 years before the shoot of 'Baahubali' commenced. He even had an idea about Krishna Devarayulu. But something didn't satisfy him and so, he abandoned those ideas. When he narrated the story of 'Baahubali', it haunted me for 4-5 days. The audience haven't seen that impact so far. They will see it in the second part.
From the time of pre-'Baahubali' days to now, what has changed for you?
Those of us associated with the movie have been respected as artistes and technicians for making a great film. To share an incident, when we were to Mumbai to promote the film, the journos there stood up as we entered the hall. Everyone of us have always believed that something is happening with this film. 'Edo jarugutundi ani anukunnam'. That's why everyone worked like mad. That may or may not happen ever again.
The passion took the film to great heights and made you an international star...
(Shows surprise at the latter half of the question). 'Baahubali' is international as a film. Even in France, the film was watched. In terms of visualization, 'Baahubali' is in some cases greater than Hollywood movies. For example, the idea of water flowing from clouds. I never saw it in any movie made in any part of the world. Rajamouli's vision itself kept us hooked all through. It's not easy to visualize such things.
And the producers strongly believed in this product. They invested their all. Before the release of the first part, we were all tensed for the producers. Although everybody of us would lose something, the producers would have lost everything had the film flopped. They could never hope to recover in their life time. It had to become a blockbuster and it did. They invested so much on the movie that they didn't make any profits from the first part.
Why didn't you find it possible to do another film in between when others like Rana did it? How was the whole experience of doing constant workouts?
May be I could have. My friends too gave me the advise that I should do a love story in three months.
Doing the workouts would be very difficult or impossible at times. We would work without a break for 24 hours. If there had to be a retake, it would eat up 3-4 hours more. Just the action part took me 300 days to complete (for both parts). The schedules were like that. The weight difference is there in different proportions throughout the film. This was the case even though the pre-production works were diligently planned.
Is it possible for you to do two movies a year from now?
If we do pre-production work meticulously by spending 6-8 months on it, it's possible to complete the shoot in 4 months, whatever may be the genre. Rajamouli planned the edits of even action sequences for the part two. That's why doing the second part was not that physically taxing. From the experience he has gained with this film, he can complete any film in shorter time frame in future.
Tell us about how you received moral succor over the years...
My friends, who have always been in my life, supported me. Without them, I would have suffered a breakdown, may be. I have 20 of them who are very close to me. Given my financial status, they even advised me to do more films.
At Madame Tussauds, you are in the league of the likes of Narendra Modi. How does it feel?
It feels nice. Once 'Baahubali' happened, everything started happening on its own.
There are gossips about Anushka looking fatter than she should have...
You will see Devasena at her most beautiful self in the second part. She is in fact looking very good in the movie. She did shed a lot of weight. You will know it when you watch the movie.
How has the film changed you as a person?
Long before this film happened, an assignment I was given changed me. I was 17 I was given the responsibility of supervising campaign arrangements in Mogaltoor, a part of the constituency my Pedananna (Krishnam Raju) was contesting as MP on BJP ticket. I was put there because I am a family member, not because I knew everything. I would wake up early in the morning and get to listen in to the conversations (among activists). That whole experience taught me what comes with taking up responsibilities.
Is the title of your next movie 'Saaho', and what about the pre-production Teaser? When is a Hindi film happening and the film with director Radha Krishna ('Jil' fame) happening?
Details about my next film will be revealed in 2-3 days. I may do a Hindi film if something exciting comes my way. The plan is to do Sujeeth and Radha Krishna's films simultaneously, but nothing is final as of now.
Your marriage after 'Baahubali' was talked about by your Pedananna. Is it happening or not?
'Baahubali' tarvatha pelli cheskovochu annaru. That's all. (Smiles).