The fight between junior artistes association and the rest of Tollywood took an ugly turn as each party unleashed charges against each other after the attack on producer Achchi Babu.
According to sources, the agents of some junior artistes allegedly barged into the producer’s guest house with goons on July 26, physically assaulted him and forced him to sign blank cheques and promissory notes seeking immediate payment of their dues. The total remuneration for the junior artists was totalled to the tune of Rs 15.5 lakh.
Condemning the attack on Achchi Babu, actor Manchu Manoj alleged, “The junior artistes associations of Vizag have no affiliation to the Film Federation of Hyderabad. These associations are mostly hiring non-card holders as junior artists for peanuts. They have formed into a syndicate and turn into dictators for producers and artistes.”
Achchi Babu is the producer of Manoj’s upcoming film, the shooting of which has been going on at a set erected near Muthyalamma Palem near Parawada in Vizag for the past 15 days.
“By bringing non-card holders, who have no experience with shooting, at least two hours of our time are wasted each day to train them. I had already paid `10 lakh and we were in talks with them over their pay, but they made threatening calls and attacked me. After making us pay Rs 850 for each artistes a day, they pay them just Rs 250 to Rs 350,” Achchi Babu said.
Director Ajay Andrews alleged that the agents, who were acting as leaders of junior artistes associations, were also part of other unions, including drivers’ unions. According to Parawada CI B.Ch. Swami Naidu, both parties, including the producer and junior artistes agents, lodged complaints against each other on Monday night.
Manchu Manoj turns Tiger
Manchu Manoj is all set to don the role of an LTTE commander in his upcoming film, tentatively titled as Okkadu Migiladu under the banner of SNR Films. Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, Manoj said that he would play two roles in two different time periods — 1990 and 2016.
“We felt that Vizag was the apt location for this periodic drama set in the 90s and our producer erected a `75-lakh set. Major sequences of the film were already shot with military helicopters, artillery guns and 600 fighters in 15 days. The film has historic significance and takes a peek into LTTE operations,” reveals Manoj....