Thumma Kiran Reddy served as an assistant director for Sekhar Kammula’s films like ‘Anand’, ‘Godavari’, ‘Happy Days’ and ‘Leader’ before turning into a solo director. Even before his debut movie has hit the silver screen, one can understand the director’s proficiency by watching the recently released movie trailer. The director, who has been working diligently on his debut project, is proud to talk about it. ‘Dil Deewana’ is the journey of two love stories. Kiran says that he is portraying youth as responsible citizens, be it their careers or love life. Audio of this film was launched by none other than the cricket maestro Kapil Dev and the entire team felt blessed with his presence. Hit the jump for our interview with the first-time director.
‘Dil Deewana’ is your directorial debut film. How did the idea for this film come around and how did you work on the project?
The idea for this film is inspired from real life instances. I observed the lives of my friends. So, I was compelled to choose such a subject.
What is ‘Dil Deewana’ about? Do you feel it’s more difficult to direct a full length film?
Not at all, length is no concern when you have a clear vision of how to go about it.
Can you share about your first time experience as a director?
The job of a Director as it is, is a lot of responsibility. We formed a good team which added to my strength. Overall it was an overwhelming experience to see that in our industry everyone from every department work towards best output.
What do you think you have learned from working with Sekhar Kammula?
After assisting Sekhar sir for so many years, I have learnt to be patient in all sorts of situations. He also guided me to DO what I strongly believed in.
What is your background and how did you get into films?
I don’t have any filmy background. It was by accident that I got into films.
What type of films would you like to direct?
Clean films… pure emotions… Films that are close to real life.
How do you go from developing a line into a story and then directing a full length film?
My inspirations are from real life characters. I lock on the characterizations first and look for a conflict in the story. Further, the characters create an interesting plot.
How did you choose the cast?
While writing the script, I imagined certain features and body language my characters should carry. We chose the closest match.
How did you get the artists prepared for the shoot? In other words, how did you build the chemistry between the lead pair?
It is not tough to build that chemistry between a pair in our industry (laughs). Anyway, we had several rehearsals and dialogue practices prior to the shoot. It eased the actors.
Did their contribution to the characters satisfy you 100%?
Where did the shooting take place?
The shooting took place in and around Hyderabad.
Can you give an idea about the cinematography and other technical aspects of the film?
Jayapal Reddy is the D.O.P of the film. He is very hard working and patient. He is in sync with my vision and it has been a great pleasure to work with him. We shot the film on Red Epic and Jayapal handled every frame in a beautiful manner. Editing is by Karthika Srinivas (a.k.a Tiger Srinu). The film is cut keeping in mind the feel of the movie yet maintaining the pace.
Tollywood is getting a bad rap now for heroes dominating the scripts. Do you have any comment?
What I think is that the times are changing. There have been a lot of heroine centric films in the recent times. Gone are those days where heroes were the only stars and had dominating roles. Heroines these days are popular in more than one industry and are creating a strong fan base for themselves.
Could you tell a little about the music director Ram Narayana, who’s also making his debut through this film?
Ram Narayan (a.k.a. NANI) is full of energy and talent. He had an enigma on stage during the audio launch event. He understands the vision of a director & doesn’t compromise on quality. He bases his Orchestration on the situation of the story.
Is there a cricket theme in the film? How was the experience meeting such a Legend Mr. Kapil Dev?
Oh! It was fantastic. Gracing us on the occasion of audio launch, not just me, the actors and the whole team felt very blessed. No, there is no theme of cricket in the film. Indeed he is a legend. He spent some quality time with us that day, discussing how excited he was to see the grandeur of the audio launch. The actors also had a candid chat with him. I take this opportunity to thank Mr. Kapil sir for having his presence felt.
You must be enthusiastic about the audience’s response for this film, right! What are you going to show the audience through your film?
I am on cloud nine and delighted with the response we got at the audio launch event. What I want to show the audience in this film is the journey of two love stories. I want to highlight that the youth these days are also being responsible, be it their careers or their love life.
Do you think there is potential in Telugu cinema to make more accessible films and increase the stamina of local box-office?
I think Telugu films have always been accessible. Marketing is the key to increase the box office’s stamina. And as of the potential is concerned, Tollywood is stretching its potential with every film that is made, be it big or small.
Could you talk a little about the producer and his production values?
Producer Raja Reddy garu gave me the creative liberty to make a good film on my terms, and the production values as you might have seen in the trailers are as rich.
What is your next project?
It is too early to plan any. For now, Dil Diwana has all my concentration.
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