Nani, who has had continuous hits lately, has been working on his third film, Majnu, this year. The industry is abuzz with predictions that he is Tollywood’s future superstar.
“If two of my films flop, everyone writes me off. Now that there have been four successes, the very same people are applauding me. I do not take these comments seriously, but what I do understand is that nothing is in my hands. I am in a happy space now and I’m prepared for anything,” explains Nani. He further noted that he has never been depressed during bad times. “I never feel that if my film fails at the box office, I fail as an actor.”
On asking whether there has been any change in his approach to films after the consecutive successes, he says, “No big change in me as a person, but now more and more people approach me for movies. I do know that I cannot take up an experimental film at this time, as budget calculations are different when compared to earlier. There are many who depend on me and invest in my films — I don’t want to disappoint them. I am wary about the subjects I choose. I decide when to deliver a genre different from my earlier films,” says Nani. He further adds that he experiments slightly with his characterisation, but mixes it with entertainment.
The actor feels that there isn’t much competition for him in the industry. “My biggest strength and weakness is that I never feel insecure, even if my films fail. Many ask me why I don’t choose a top actress. Ironically, the very same people complain that the industry has a dearth of leading actresses. Someone has to take the initiative and I have. In the last three films of mine, I have introduced new actresses,” he says. He asserts that he doesn’t prefer big names for a film as he believes in the content more.
“I am an independent actor doing the kind of films I like. I don’t believe in the number game, nor am I in the race for stardom. I am a film buff — I watch all films. I like to watch them on the morning of the first day with the crowd. As for my films, I watch with 60 family members that include all my relatives,” he affirms.
The actor also says that the definition of stardom changes every ten or fifteen years. “In the beginning, N.T. Rama Rao garu had played mythological characters with ease and became a superstar. And then, Chiranjeevi garu — a superb dancer — became a superstar. Now it’s someone who is subtle and handsome. If I do films aiming to be a superstar, I will be finished. I have to continue with the good work that I am already doing,” says Nani.
While many big stars complain that they don’t get good stories due to which they do very few films, Nani’s third film is soon to release and another is in the pipeline for a December release. How does he manage that? “It’s wrong to say that there are no good stories. There are so many with good subjects. They just need good guidance. Because of lack of experience, they may not execute it properly, but there are good writers,” he says.
Talking about Tamil films, he says, “Whenever I land in Chennai, I see more fans coming to me for photos here than in Hyderabad. Though I have done only little work in Tamil, people are very affectionate. Well known Tamil producers like Kalaipuli Thanu, Jnanavel Raja and others have been approaching me, but I’d rather work on a bi-lingual film rather than just a Tamil film,” he says....