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Interview of Srinivas Avasarala about 101 Jillala Andagadu

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Srinivas Avasarala awaits the release of '101 Jillala Andagadu' this Friday (September 3). In this interview, he talks about the comedy, working with the cast and crew, his upcoming movies, and more.

When this movie, which tells the story of a bald-headed person, was launched in 2019, the Hindi film 'Bala' hadn't yet come out. Like 'Bala', 'Udta Chaman', too, had a similar plot point. Our movie was supposed to be released in theatres in April 2020. The pandemic has delayed its release, though. I have watched 'Bala' but it has no similarities with my movie. We made no changes to the script after it came. It would have been good had our movie come before 'Bala', though.

In our society, dark-complexioned, short, bald people are mocked. This ruins their self-confidence. It affects them for life. Mocking someone on the basis of looks has its negative consequences. Our movie explores the issue in an entertaining manner.

We have seen the likes of 'Size Zero' before, but our movie has got a greater comedy quotient, in my opinion. I would have directed '101 Jillala Andagadu' had I not been busy with some other directorial. Director Vidyasagar Rachakonda himself is a good writer. He had 100% freedom to deal with the material the way he liked to.

Coming to the title, I had some other title in mind. I registered it as 'Andame Anandam'. But Krish Jagarlamudi garu liked '101 Jillala Andagadu' and I too went ahead with it because it's catchy.

I happened to approach actress Ruhani Sharma for some other story after watching 'Chi La Sow'. That project didn't work out and when I finalized '101 Jillala Andagadu', I felt that she would be the right face.

Our film doesn't make light of any handicap. It doesn't have problematic comedy. I know some people who feel inferior about their dark complexion. Balding leads to its own set of mental issues. More than giving a message, our film explores the issue organically. The message is inherent, perhaps. I have not attempted to give it explicitly.

There is a lot of humour in the movie. At the same time, it is rooted in a strongly felt emotion. I feel that comedy should always spring from some or the other emotion.

I take at least one year to write a script. I am never in a hurry. 'Babu Baga Busy' didn't go down well with the family audience. It was not supposed to be watched with your parents. I did that movie only because I don't want to be typecast. I played a murderer in 'Gentleman'. Writing gives me the utmost satisfaction. A film is made at the writing table, and the editing table. Direction is a stressful job.

I have written four ideas. I want to focus on writing and direction in the coming years. After the release of '101 Jillala Andagadu', I will develop one of the four ideas depending on my assessment of the situation. 'Palana Abbayi Palana Ammayi' is half done. The pending portions have to be shot in the US. It will be completed only next year.

Krish Jagarlamudi garu is a bundle of ideas. He doesn't force his ideas on others. He shares his ideas but doesn't expect his director/writer to obey him. He has got a unique sense of drama.

Updated on September 2, 2021