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In 'Amigos', hero himself is the villain: Nandamuri Kalyan Ram


Nandamuri Kalyan Ram awaits the theatrical release of 'Amigos' on February 10. In this interview, the actor says that the film's story is about three lookalikes who are equally important to the story. One of them is a bad guy. Catch him talk about why he is confident that 'Amigos' will be loved by the audience.

I enjoyed the success of 'Bimbisara' by doing 'Amigos' and 'Devil'. Success boosts your confidence. At the same time, responsibility goes up. You would want to work harder and do new things. All three films were finalized in 2020.

I always wanted to work with Mythri Movie Makers. They asked me to listen to Rajendra Reddy's story. The writer-director had been with the banner for about a year. 'Amigos' has got a novel concept. Doppelgangers is a concept we are aware of. Building a story around three doppelgangers is a fresh attempt in itself.

It's the story that made me warm up to Rajendra's script. Our films are wary of making a villain out of a hero. Grey shades are the maximum we do. It is inevitable that our stories have become formulaic. In contrast, 'Amigos' is different. The hero himself is the villain. There is just one heroine. I found the elements quite engaging. All three doppelgangers are important. That's the best part of the film. It's not like one or two of them is ditched after a point. For the entire running time of 137 minutes, you are going to see Kalyan Ram!

Since all three doppelgangers are important to the story, we didn't want to name the film after any one character. We wanted the title to be something that reflects the theme of friendship. 'Snehitudu', 'Friend', etc. would be routine. We opted for the French word that means friend. Nobody knows what is the meaning of 'Kantara'. It was only after the film came out that people cared to know its meaning.

Doppelganger is not an unbelievable concept at all. Recently, a doppelganger of Elon Musk was discovered. There was a piece of similar news during Rahul Gandhi's Bharat Jodo Yatra.

'Amigos' is not an experimental film. '118' was an experimental film, I would say. All my other films are commercial in nature. When I do a film, I strive to say something refreshing. 'Bimbisara' had time-travel and fantasy elements that came with a different treatment. Finding a well-written script is a fortunate thing.

'Enno ratrulosthayi' comes in the second half. We picked to remix a popular song because we didn't want the audience to be put off by a song when the movie is going on a distinct note. A remix would not put off the audience.

The making was not easy. It was a tough job in terms of technical difficulties for an actor playing three roles. Siddharth is much like me in terms of behaviour. Manjunath is a character who is too soft-spoken. He is like our director, Rajendra. Michael is a gangster-kind of personality.

Ashika Ranganath is the choice of the team. I don't believe in imposing personal choices. It was a consensual decision that we made after analyzing her profile. She is a very good dancer. She has done about 10 films in Kannada.

More than songs, it is the background music that is the film's mainstay. That's why we picked Ghibran.

I watch most movie releases. These days, I am also watching content on almost all OTT platforms. I have been watching content from across the globe. I am conscious of what I do. I don't want to get repetitive. I am conscious about what I offer to the audience. In 'Bimbisara', my character did surprise the audience because that was not at all expected from me. After 'Bimbisara', I haven't okayed a single script as yet. I now feel more responsible. During the lockdown in 2020, I cogitated over why some of my movies failed at the box office. I tried to take stock of my failures and the reasons for them. I thought about various permutations and combinations.

I haven't watched the American Western comedy film 'Three Amigos' (1986). My movie is an entertainer and not a comedy. 'Amigos' is not going to have a sequel. I shared a good bond with Mythri Movie Makers.

People are asking me about Taraka Ratna's health. Let the doctors give updates officially.

'Devil' is almost 70% done. I will be done with the shoot by May probably.

Updated on February 7, 2023