Yatra, the biopic on the former Chief Minister YS Rajashekar Reddy is slated to hit the screens on February 8th. On this occasion, we caught up with Malayalam star Mammootty, who portrayed YSR in the film. Here is the transcript.
Q) How was it acting in a Telugu film?
After almost thirty years, I’m happy to be a part of Telugu cinema. After listening to the script in detail, I instantly liked the character and felt that this role suited me well.
Q) Working with an upcoming director like Mahi V Raghav?
Till now, in my career, I had worked with close to seventy debut directors. Compared to them, Mahi V Raghav is much better (laughs). I personally feel that new directors have the capability to present the film in a new style.
Q) About portraying YSR on the screen?
Director Mahi came to me with a full-fledged script and had confidence in me that I can pull off YSR’s character. By seeing his confidence, even I got excited to portray the role. Moreover, the film is not a complete biopic on YSR but it showcases important stages in his life. Making YSR’s Padhayatra as the central theme, the director prepared this script which gave me a lot of scopes to perform. I tried to be myself in the film and never imitated YSR. Be it the walking style, speech or behavior I acted in my style.
Q) Have you done any research on YSR?
No. I believed in Mahi and blindly followed his instructions. I may come from a different place but the emotional connect in any film remain the same. That is what I always believe.
Q) Will you ever enter into politics?
I have been acting in films from 38 years and I’m happy here. So I have nothing to do with politics and will never enter into it.
Q) How did you manage to dub for the film?
While pronouncing most of the Telugu and Malayalam words have a similarity. So I never faced any problem with the dubbing. There are a few words which need a native pronunciation and I took extra when I spoke them.
Q) Have you ever met YSR?
No. I never got an opportunity to met him.
Q) Telugu movies you watched in the recent past?
I watched Rangasthalam and Bharat Ane Nenu.
Q) Finally, will you continue working in Telugu films?
Definitely. If any director convinces me with his story I’m ready to do Telugu films anytime.
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