At a time where period dramas are a huge hit, the next big star to be seen in a period movie is Akkineni Nagarjuna. “My next movie is Om Namo Venkatesa set in the 17th century based on Lord Balaji’s life. I play a devotee named Hathiram Baba who is summoned by the Lord from Rajasthan. I chose this movie because of its spiritual theme. It’s almost like having a conversation with God. Legend has it that Lord Balaji used to come down to earth every night to play dice with Hathiram,” an excited Nagarjuna says.
However, this is not his first such outing. Back in 1997, he has done a mythological costume drama Annamaya, directed by K. Raghavendra Rao, who will direct Hathiram Baba too. “Raghvendra Rao is a spiritual person. And for me, this is a complete change from Oopiri,” Nagarjuna states.
Is he going for a transition from the roles he has done so far? “Absolutely. I wouldn’t say I am at the fag-end of my career, but I want to make sure that every move I make in the second half of my career makes me happy as an artiste,” he explains.
Both his sons – Naga Chaitanya and Akhil – have made a mark in the industry. Is he their guiding force? “Yes, I am guiding them. Naga Chaitanya is settled in his career; Akhil is yet to. I am guiding him with his second film which is starting now. The first one went wrong, but now, he’s finding his groove. Run-of- the-mill movies won’t work anymore; a new phase has started in Telugu cinema.”
So, what are his future plans? “It’s very exciting to be an actor. I am working on a few scripts. My last film Soggade Chinni Nayana was a blockbuster. So we are looking at the prospects of a sequel to it, provided it works,” he says....