Lucky Media's Bekkem Venugopal is one of the most happening Telugu film producers. He debuted with 'Tata Birla Madhyalo Laila', the super-hit movie, years ago. 'Paagal', starring Vishwak Sen in the lead, is his current project. He celebrates his birthday on April 27. In this interview, Venugopal talks about the film and his future plans.
In 2020, I celebrated my birthday during lockdown. Even this year, the situation hasn't bettered. At a time when we are facing an existential crisis, I am spending my time impressing upon my friends and relatives to follow Covid protocols and also take the vaccine. For the past week, films and releases are not on the top of my mind.
I usually don't give much prominence to my birthday. I am a film personality, for whom films are everything. If my birthday falls on a day when my film is on the floors, I celebrate it among my team members. Aside from the small celebration, I don't indulge in much fun. At a time when the whole world is going through a distressing phase, I don't want to be seen celebrating an event.
'Paagal' was launched on 19 March 2020. Days later, a strict lockdown was imposed. The film shoot began from November 1. After the completion of the shoot, we readied the first copy and announced the release date. This is when the second wave struck us and we had to postpone the release. We are totally satisfied with how 'Paagal' has shaped up. We did the movie with a lot of excitement. Everyone who has watched the movie has said that 'Paagal' is a sure-shot hit.
'Tata Birla Madhyalo Laila' feels like a recent film. But it was made 15 years ago. In the last 15 years, I have spent every day thinking about my next movies and planning everything. I have got to travel with a lot of creative and nice people. I have become a strong person mentally. I thank my family members and friends for all this.
After 'Hushaaru', I announced 'Paagal'. But I had to take up some other project in the meantime.
'Paagal' is a complete family entertainer that is rich in emotions. It's a film for all ages. Although it is a debut movie for the director, he has done a superb job. The scenes between Vishwak Sen and Nivetha Pethuraj are going to stand out. Murali Sharma garu has got a key role. Manikandan's cinematography and Radhan's music are going to be key highlights.
Dil Raju garu is a legend. He has always inspired me like a brother and a guru. I am very happy to have been associated with him on 'Paagal', for which he has lent complete support from the beginning. I hope our journey will be long-lasting.
Once everyone is vaccinated, people are going to watch movies in theaters in large numbers. Cinema is a key source of entertainment for the public.
I have never done any movie without thoughtfulness. I have put equal amount of effort on every movie that I have made. All the movies that I have produced are my favourite movies. I am producing a movie each with Sree Vishnu and Sohel of Bigg Boss fame.