Actor Samantha. (By Arrangement)
Leading art director Ashok Koralath, known for his phenomenal work. like the Charminar set in Mahesh Babu-starrer Okkadu and the fantasy sets for the Anushka Shetty-starrer Arundhathi, etc., has come up with yet another stunning creation for Yashoda, starring Samantha.
Art director Ashok Koralath. (By Arrangement)
Ashok has built huge sets of a 5-star hotel for the thriller directed by Hari and Harish.
The makers reportedly visited many five-star hotels across South India to shoot the scenes there, but since 50 per cent of the film has to be shot in the chosen hotel, they decided to build sets instead of shooting on location.
"Shooting for over two months at star hotels is difficult. So, we decided to create grand sets of two floors in a studio on the city’s outskirts," says Ashok, adding, "Our entire team (director, cinematographer, producer Sivalenka Krishna Prasad etc.) brainstormed during the script discussions about the design and economic feasibility."
The sets are complete with dining halls, living rooms, conference hall and even a library and amenities that match a five-star hotel. The props like wall hangings have been bought and furniture (office tables) and interiors have been custom-made.
"We worked for two months with over 200 people to build these sets. We ensured that we maintained the same style and colour scheme of grey or classic silver across the board," the art director shares, adding that a swimming pool and yoga facilities are also part of the sets.
Ashok sees the set as a strong character in the story, just like the actors. And Samantha was reportedly very impressed with the level of detailing. "She said the set looks so beautiful and that she wants to continue shooting there," Ashok smiles.
Ashok has worked for more than 100 films in Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam.
"I have evolved over the years by having conversations with directors, actors and cinematographers. A lot of knowledge transfer happened during these interactions. Perhaps that made me what I am today," he says, reflecting on his journey. But to come up with any art, he says, "understanding the story and the thought behind it is important."