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Koratala Siva speaks about 'Acharya', NTR30, dream project & more

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Koratala Siva's career biggest day is April 29. This is when 'Acharya' is heading to theatres. In this interview, catch the acclaimed filmmaker talk about the subject, the backdrop chosen, the characterizations of Acharya (Chiranjeevi) and Siddha (Ram Charan), and more. He also says that Jr NTR's next with him is going to be explosive.

What happens when a stranger with a strong backstory enters a new place that is facing a crisis? That's how 'Acharya' started at the ideation level. The temple town backdrop struck me somewhere. I then thought of the Naxalite protagonist because the contrast can't get better.

I am definitely nervous like a student who has given his exam. If you haven't written the exam well, you give up on the result. But that's not the case here. I am waiting for the result!

Acharya is known for his aggression. He is juxtaposed with Siddha, who is calm and non-aggressive. Youngsters will want to ape him. Ram Charan's character will be introduced towards the end of the first half. And he will be seen in the second half more.

'Acharya' doesn't highlight religious aspects at all. The temple is just a backdrop. Even the Naxalist ideology hasn't been espoused.

I had my doubts as to whether I can do justice to both Chiranjeevi garu and Ram Charan. But I didn't make any calculations. I allowed things to be organic. I didn't exercise too much. The output has been free-flowing. The scenes involving the two actors are an eye-feast. A lot of people from the film industry visited the sets and watched the father-son duo.

My characters are always honest. Even if he is a beast, my protagonist is honest. He is true to his character. Take 'Mirchi', for example. The male protagonist is honest whether he is violent or non-violent. He wants to bring transformation in the villains. I want my characters to be honest.

I only think of creating a strong world in my films. I don't worry about giving a message. Does 'Bharat Ane Nenu' have any message in it? It's about a loyal son who was told by his mother to always keep his word come what may. Such a son goes on to take the oath as Chief Minister. That's the biggest promise anyone can make! 'Srimanthudu' was also about a heroic character. People took a strong message in it. I was inspired by Good Samaritans in real life in writing some of the scenes in the film.

'Acharya' is not a pan-Indian release because we don't have adequate time. Even the producers felt the same. It's a fair decision. Just because we want to grab the market, we shouldn't hurry through.

Due to the pandemic, 'Acharya' got delayed. Its shoot couldn't be kicked off when 'Sye Raa' was in the making. I didn't write any script in 2020. I didn't have that kind of mindset.

As a filmmaker, I feel that you have to give universal, massy backdrops to impress the pan-Indian audience. If you make a soft family entertainer, you may not find a large audience.

It is true that I am strongly influenced by the ideals of the Ramakrishna Mission. I want to make a film on Swami Vivekananda. If given a chance, it will be a big film like 'Gandhi' (1982). I am enamored of Swami, whose gospel inspired everyone when there was no mass media. I am aware that Victory Venkatesh garu wants to play Vivekananda.

I would like to produce good content-based movies. I have asked my assistants to develop stories so that I can pick some of them and invest money in them.

Coming to NTR30, expect updates on May 20, which is Tarak's birthday. It will be a high-voltage film written to cater to the largest possible audience segment. I am yet to discuss some things with him. I can't say who is the film's heroine and all. Nothing has been discussed.  

Updated on April 27, 2022