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'Tillu Square' is more commercial in nature than 'DJ Tillu': Mallik Ram


Director Mallik Ram awaits the release of 'Tillu Square' on March 29. In this interview, he talks about working with the talented actor-writer Siddhu Jonnalagadda and others. The filmmaker sets the expectations right when he says what not to expect and what to expect from the comedy caper co-starring Anupama Parameswaran and others. The film, produced by Sithara Entertainments, is one of the most-awaited sequels of all time.

My first two projects were OTT releases. My two-season web series 'Pelli Gola' received public appreciation. Then my direct-to-OTT release 'Adbhutham' was also appreciated. 'Tillu Square', which happened to me by chance, is my first theatrical release. The director of 'DJ Tillu' didn't do this film because he got busy with some other project. Our confidence in the sequel was boosted when we read the final story.

The story was penned over a period of nearly 1.5 years. We kept in mind the fact that the first part, released in 2022, acquired a cult status. Everything had to be unique. That's what Siddhu, both the screenplay and dialogue writer, focused on through and through.

You can expect some characters from 'DJ Tillu' to find a place in 'Tillu Square'. For all practical purposes, the story will find closure with the second part. As for the third part, nothing has been entertained at the conception level so far.

The reason the character Radhika has been highlighted in the trailer and through a song is that Radhika has become an emotion. In 'Tillu Square', Siddhu's character is confronted with a new problem. The gaffes and mistakes we commit come back to haunt us in the future. That's what happens in Tillu's life.

'Tillu Square', in terms of the genre, is different from the first part. I would say that 'DJ Tillu' was more of a black comedy drama. On the other hand, the current film doesn't belong to that brand of comedy. It's more commercial and universal. The enjoyment factor will be higher in the audience if they don't constantly compare the content of 'Tillu Square' with that of the first part. The sequences immediately following the interval were conceived carefully to maximize the engagement factor.

Boldness is how Tillu expresses his romance and affection. The conversations he holds with the female lead have a sense of edginess about them.

Lilly is not an easy character to pull off. Only someone as talented as Anupama could have done it. At one point, Madonna Sebastian (of 'Premam' fame) and Meenakshi Chaudhary (of the recent 'Guntur Kaaram' fame) were also considered. Anupama temporarily had to opt out of the project due to scheduling issues. I haven't cast her because of her performance in 'Rowdy Boys'. I have always been confident of her talent.

Siddhu has written the screenplay and dialogues. I believe in collaborating with creative minds. In the case of 'Adbhutham' (streaming on Hotstar), the writer was Prasanth Varma.

Siddhu and I collaborated on brainstorming scenes, crafting them in a way that resonated with both of us. Given that 'Tillu Square' is character-focused, Siddhu's active role in shaping the story naturally extends to filmmaking. I don't harbor any sense of inferiority; rather, we work together in a collaborative spirit.

Thaman was supposed to compose the background score. Due to some reasons, he was not available. So, we opted for Bheems Ceciroleo.

At Sithara Entertainments, producer S Naga Vamsi anna is only focused on quality. He doesn't mind the budget. Trivikram garu gave the title of the film. He also reviewed the scenes that follow the interval. It was based on his feedback that we re-shot the portions.

My next project is going to be with AK Entertainments.  

Updated on March 21, 2024