Producer Miryala Ravinder Reddy awaits the release of 'Peddha Kapu 1' on September 29. In this interview, the 'Akhanda' producer says that the story is about the transformation of a commoner into an extraordinary man in an unequal society.
He praises director Srikanth Addala's treatment, casting a debutant as the hero, the release date decision, and more.
As far as I am concerned, 'Peddha Kapu 1' has always been intended to be a big movie right from the start. After 'Akhanda' hit the cinemas in December 2021, I was in a state of confusion for a couple of months. I was not sure what kind of movie I should make. Should it be with a big star? Or, should it be something else? My well-wishers advised me to pay advance to some or the other big hero. However, my conscience was not fine with it. I didn't want to pay the advance amount without having a story in hand. But since a well-wisher insisted, I paid a hero some advance with the condition that I wouldn't team up with him unless I had a story that satisfied me. That's when 'Peddha Kapu 1' came my way and I decided to do it with a newcomer. I zeroed in on my brother-in-law Virat Karrna. Casting a newcomer was an honest decision. Just because the hero is a newcomer, we didn't want to confine the scale of production.
The male lead is a common man. That's why he had to be played by a newcomer. Only then would it look believable. The desire of the powerful to dominate the powerless is a theme everyone is familiar with. 'Peddha Kapu 1' is unique because of its authenticity and nativity. Srikanth Addala's narration will make the audience believe that changing the status quo will take resistance.
At first, I didn't know that Virat was interested in becoming an actor. He made a showreel. I was convinced that he was hero material. I am very happy with his performance. This is an intense action drama and Virat's performance matched the wavelength of the story. I told the director that Virat could be replaced by some other actor if he was not good.
'Peddha Kapu 1' is realistic in the sense that it was shot in real locations. There are no artificial sets. In that sense, it is in the zone of a Vetrimaaran movie. The director managed to recreate the 1980s era. This is not a story that can be narrated in just one part. From the beginning, it has been a two-part film.
There are violent scenes in the film because any rebellion will result in bloodshed. In any instance of conflict, there is a hegemon and there is a subordinated individual. It's not about caste. 'Peddha Kapu 1' has no caste angle. Social differences exist within all societies and nations. This was not the title of our movie. We had titles such as 'Karna' in mind. The director happened to visit a village where a statue belonged to the village's 'peddha kapu'. 'Kapu' doesn't have any caste connotation as far as our film's story is concerned.
Our plan was to release 'Peddha Kapu 1' on August 18. We couldn't do it because of some pending work. We then had August 31 in mind. It was just a day before 'Kushi'. I avoided the clash with 'Kushi'. I had no intention of releasing the movie in September due to 'Salaar'. I thought of releasing my movie on November 3. As soon as I learned that 'Salaar' would be postponed, I chose September 29 as the date for my movie. At that time, I had no idea that producer Srinivasaa Chitturi of 'Skanda' was considering September 28. He asked me not to change the release date of 'Peddha Kapu 1', saying that 'Skanda' would be pushed back to September 15. But the distributors preferred September 28 for 'Skanda'. Out of no choice, the two films are releasing this week on two consecutive days.
Srikanth Addala will be seen seated in his scenes in the film. It's not easy to play such a role. He didn't cast himself at first. A Telugu artist we consulted couldn't join the shoot. A Malayalam artist we approached couldn't allot dates.
The characters played by Addala, Rao Ramesh, Naren, Anasuya Bharadwaj and Eeshwari Rao are all true to life. The male lead represents the commoner. You can expect political elements. When the Telangana agitation took off, youngsters enthusiastically supported it in the hope that a new political force would rise. In 'Peddha Kapu 1', in the mid-1980s, the birth of a new party heralds hope. Will that new party give hope? In that sense, 'Peddha Kapu 1' is political. NTR's entry into politics has been shown in the movie because leaders like him and YSR are respected across the board.
'Akhanda 2' will be there for sure. I myself am not sure when it will go on the floors.