Mahanati appears a befitting biopic to Savitri going by teasers and promos. With Keerthy Suresh’s appearance as million dollar lookalike of the legendary actress have surged audiences longing for the movie. For those who can’t wait to see the movie hitting screens on May 9th, here are some interesting behind the screen moments revealed by Keerthy herself.
- Were you apprehensive of playing Mahanati, what were you initial reactions when it was offered to you?
- I was nervous to take up the role as I wasn’t confident to play the legendary actress. But Nag Ashwin, Swapna and Priyanka persuaded me and boosted up my confidence. Even after listening to the entire script I was indefinite as the role has contrast shades showcasing ups and downs of her life. I kept questioning myself whether I could do justice to the role. Full credits to Nag Ashwin for making me carry it.
- It’s amazing that you look so close to Savitri garu, how was that possible?
- Savitri garu had a broader face with sharp features. Even I’m amazed with how the makeup artistes and hairstylists made me look similar to her with the help of prosthetics. Costume designers work is remarkable. I will be seen in over 120 costumes.
- What made Nag Ashwin zeroe in on you for Savitri?
- Nag Ashwin was looking for face with innocent looks for Savitri’s younger days. Apparently, he was convinced that I could fit the bill after watching my film ‘Rail’.
- Have you done any homework to match the grace of iconic actress?
- Nagi had a collection of video clips of Savitri garu which he shared with me. He also segregated them into romance, comedy, melodrama etc. It helped me a lot. However, I watched her classics like Mayabazar and Missamma prior to that.
I tried my level best to match with her mannerisms especially for Maya Bazar or Neevu Leka Veena song from Dr Chakravarthy.
Savitri garu’s daughter Vijaya Chamundeshwari garu helped me with learning about her off screen persona and behaviour. Coincidentally, I too am interested in her hobbies like driving cars, swimming and horse riding.
- What to be expected from Mahanati?
- Mahanati can be divided into two phases. Only 20% of the film covers her reel life image which is well known to everyone while the remaining 80% deals with her real life person she was.
- What impact does the film have on you?
- It’s honor to have portrayed legendary and inspirational actress. She was a natural performer who’d turn any character into iconic one with her facial expressions, body language and impeccable dialogue delivery. She’s dictionary of an actress that would remain reference for generations of actresses to come. Off the screen, Savitri garu’s compassion is something to be inherited.
- Tell us about other actors in the film?
- It was pleasure working with ensemble cast including Samantha, Vijay Deverakonda and Dulquer Salmaan. Every character has their due and they pulled it off with ease. I had opportunity to share screen space with senior actors like Dr. Mohan Babu garu and Dr. Rajendra Prasad garu. Working in Mahanati has been a learning experience for me.
- About director Nag Ashwin?
- He is calm and composed on the sets. Besides dealing with such a humongous project, he never gets tired or stressed out. He gives liberty to the actors but at the same time extracts what he wants. He insists on realistic approach and encourages spontaneity. It was chill out time shooting for Mahanati.
- What Mahanati means to you?
- Savitri garu as an undisputed lady super star who lived life on her terms. Her final days are as dramatic as in some of her movies. Mahanati is like an ode in celebration of Savitri’s life. It will introduce unseen side of Savitri garu. Present generation will get a greater idea of heydays of Savitri garu and also have chance to witness the golden era of Telugu and Tamil cinema. We are confident that the movie will appeal to all sections of audience.