Be it films, sports, or entrepreneurship, Rana Daggubati has certainly pushed the envelope! “Sports, just like cinema, brings people together. The fact is that I enjoy various sports — from car racing to NBA and football to kabaddi — the global exposure enables me to look forward to many things,” shares the Baahubali star.
After backing the Hyderabad Football Club (in the ISL), and being the ambassador for Pro Kabaddi, Rana is excited about being the face of Sony TEN 4 for Telugu and Tamil.
He attributes his love for sports to his father and uncle Venkatesh. “They influenced me a lot during my growing years. I remember, my father used to wake up early to watch American Football, NBA, etc. I was a big fan of WWE too, so I was exposed to global sports at a young age,” explains Rana.
While cricket is the sport everyone has been following, he says that times are changing. “We are seeing different levels of engagement where people are trying to localise global sports. As a result, the local audience is connecting to the global sports culture.”
With sporting events all over the world resuming — the India vs Sri Lanka cricket series is underway and the Tokyo Games are round the corner — Rana feels multi-sport events are a great way to unite people. “We are taking our culture to the global audience and, in return, we are imbibing global sports into our culture. It’s a great transition phase,” he says, adding that sports has no language, and can uplift the spirit of people from all walks of life.
He hopes the situation in the world of sports will continue to improve.
Rana, his father, and uncle are often spotted enjoying the IPL games. Apart from films, he asserts that sports brings his family together.
“Entertainment always pulls us,” he smiles, and adds, “My father and uncle discuss sports a lot at home. Their engagement levels are at a higher level than mine though.” Rana feels being a part of Sony Ten 4 will also give him an opportunity to get close to his roots.
While the world is slowly coming to terms with the new normal, Rana, who is also an entrepreneur, believes that innovation will be key to success in business, going forward. “The pandemic has already trigged a sea-change in the way businesses are being done, it is leading to new thinking. As the economy opens up, businesses are going beyond boundaries and targeting the global stage. I feel the Gen Next entrepreneurs are going to be drivers of innovation,” he says.
On the film front, Rana is super thrilled to be back on the sets of his next film, Virata Parvam. “Let me tell you, I have been missing this on-the-sets atmosphere for a long time,” he smiles, adding that he has a few days of shooting left for the action drama. He is also shooting for the yet-to-be-titled remake of Malayalam film Ayyappanum Koshiyum.
“For the most part of last year everyone was at home, but suddenly we have got busy trying to figure out dates and schedules of shooting,” he says, adding that with safety protocols and smaller crews, the challenge lies in planning the production.
“Times are changing; filmmaking isn’t the same as it was before the pandemic. It’s going to be different at least for the next one year. We need to put on our thinking caps to see how to better execute with a limited crew,” the actor observes.
As we got ready to wrap up the conversation, we couldn’t resist asking Rana, who married Miheeka last August, about his married life. He tells us that marriage has brought stability in his life.
“My madness is now more organised (laughs); Miheeka is very chill. Marriage has also brought stability to my thought process and acting. I am able to do things better —eat, sleep and work on time. I am in a much better place than I was earlier,” he says, adding that since his wedding, he has felt more responsible and consistent.