Dreaded gangsters on the prowl in Tollywood

With young actor Rana Daggubati also set to essay the role of a gangster in his upcoming movie 'Rakshasa Raju', it seems that fascination for larger-than-life roles is growing by the day in Tollywood. Already, reigning star Pawan Kalyan is playing a ruthless gangster in his upcoming film 'OG, while Prabhas will be taking on mighty villains in 'Salaar'. Just recently, Allu Arjun rocked a dark role in 'Pushpa'; earlier superstar Mahesh Babu also appeared as a dreaded gangster in 'Businessman.' Another young hero, Varun Tej, portrayed the role of a gangster in 'Gaddalakonda Ganesh,' and more young heroes are set to join the fray. "Every actor would love to try out a gangster role in his career since he could show varied shades and enthrall their respective fans," says director Teja, who has convinced hotshot Rana Daggubati to showcase his fiery side in 'Rakshasa Raju.''

"Rana liked the concept and his larger-than-life role and agreed to play roles with varied shades. Action-centric films don't work if they don't have a proper story. Even a gangster movie needs a good story, and it should be a perfect blend of action and emotion to keep the audience glued to their seats," he adds. Director Teja, known for love stories like 'Jayam,' is also making a dark film for the first time in his career. "Every top director has dabbled with gangster movies, and I am no exception. I have taken it up as a new challenge as I wanted to deliver star-studded fare," he points out.

However, producer Raj Kandukuri claims that the massive success of 'KGF' has made Telugu stars flex their muscles and make mincemeat of their opponents. "KGF was surely a triggering point where machismo was glorified and stylized and prompted big Telugu stars to give it a shot," he says, adding, "Even budgets for such films are higher, and even casting would be big and happening. Like Prabhas and Prithviraj's combination in 'Salaar' and money spent on action episodes, it will also make action sequences lovable and breathtaking," he adds.
He claims that with action themes being universal, Telugu stars also want to reach out to audiences in varied states across India. "Action heroes will have more reach than a lover boy, so Telugu superstars are in a mood to expand their fan base and go in for makeovers and grabbing the eyeballs of non-Telugu viewers," he adds.

On gore and violence going overboard in the name of toxic masculinity, Kandukuri says, "Soon stars will also realize the futility of too much violence and would begin to do relatable characters to impress their fans and general viewers too."

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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