BVS Ravi belongs to the generation of film makers who started as writers and then progressed as the director. Started his career as a writer for Girl Friend, he was associated with successful directors like Boyapati Seenu, Srinu Vaitla, Bhaskar and worked for movies like Bhadra, Munna, Parugu and King before directing Wanted with Gopichand. I have interviewed him on the eve of release of Wanted.
Good morning Ravi. Congratulations on your debut as a director and on the eve of release of Wanted?
BVS Ravi: Thank you.
Can you please tell us as to how did you become a director?
BVS Ravi: I’m from Vijayawada and my father is a lecturer and my grandfather is a poet. I have read books from my father’s library and poetry from my grandfather and that grew interest in me to become a writer. I joined as assistant with Posani Krishnamurali and the first film I worked as writer is Girlfriend. I always wanted to become a director so I worked as assistant to various directors without taking any credit. I worked with Bhaskar for Parugu, Boyapati Seenu for Bhadra. I also had privilege to work with directors like VV Vinayak. It is during the making of Parugu, Munna and Bhadra that Dil Raju encouraged me to take up direction. Ravi Teja is my best friend and he always encouraged me that I have skills to direct a film. He was the first guy in the industry to pat my back and support me. We were supposed to do a film together but didn’t work out. Later on one of my good friends suggested me to tell a story to Gopichand and after 2 hours of narration he agreed to do a film with me and that’s how Wanted happened.
You have traversed your journey in the film industry from a story writer/dialogue writer to a director. How do you feel about this?
BVS Ravi: It is a natural progression in any occupation to get promoted to a higher role. Even in film industry it’s natural that we
progress from writer to director. Don’t know if I will become producer or bollywood director tomorrow. Nothing was planned though there was always an ambition to become a director in me. I always want to make different and hatke films and don’t want to do regular films.
One of the director recently told me that it’s very easy to tell a story but very difficult to present the same on the screen. As a story writer turned director how different is story telling from direction?
BVS Ravi: Storytelling is a skill but direction is about management skill. When we tell a story, we tell story in the way we liked. Where as in direction, we have to extract what we have envisioned from the actors. We have to convince them to deliver what we want. There would be lot of issues and problems in the course of shooting like climatic situation, absence of artist etc and director should be able to manage everything. In short, direction is more about managing.
Who has or what has inspired you to enter film industry?
BVS Ravi: Cinema has inspired me to come into the industry. I think it’s not only me. Every director will tell you the same. Its cinema that made us enter the industry.
BVS Ravi: This is a love story between hero and heroine. Heroine is wanted and the hero wants her at any cost. This is a family oriented love story. We do have strong villains who can be beaten only by Gopichand.
BVS Ravi: His fans can expect to see him as a lover boy in Wanted. They can see a romantic side in him. For the first time you can see in lighter vein love scenes and romantic songs which he never did earlier. He did a great job. He would look more handsome than earlier. His earlier film Golimar was a serious subject where he hardly smiles whereas in this movie he is hardly serious. So you can expect to see an entertaining and romantic Gopichand in this movie.
How is it working with him?
BVS Ravi: It is comfortable working with him. He is keen in learning and interested in everything. He helped me in scripting too. Best part is that he is interested in experimenting and shedding his image. Some people told me that his film titles have sentiment of having a sunna in the end of title but he agreed my suggestion of title- Wanted.
Deeksha is the Heroine and this is her third film. How did you finalize on Deeksha? Can you also talk a bit about her role?
BVS Ravi: We were looking for a new girl as a heroine in this film and when Deeksha entered our office, I knew that she is my heroine. I saw her first in Vedam and I checked with Krish about her. He told me that she is camera friendly and asked us to a photo shoot
before taking her in as Vedam didn’t have a role where she could perform. We did photo shoot and roped her in. She did extremely good job in the film and I’m very happy with her performance. In a way this could be considered as her first film as this is the first solo heroine role that she played. As I said this is a story of hero and heroine, heroine has equal role as the hero and so there is lot of scope for performance for her in Wanted and she did excellent job.
Senior and experienced actors like Prakash Raj, Nasser and Jayasudha are part of the cast of Wanted. I’m sure you had great time working with such icons. How easy or difficult was it to direct them for a first timer like you?
BVS Ravi: I was more comfortable with the senior actors who worked with me. Chandramohan garu is the senior most actor who worked in the film. We have Nasser sir who heard the story at 10PM and he identified his role and also told me his mannerisms etc., what difficulty will I have when I get talented artists like them. I narrated story to Prakash Raj during Brundavanam shoot. Jayasudha garu is not doing any movies now but she agreed because of my rapport with her. Subbaraju is my friend for long and I told him the scenes when I was writing and he was very excited and wanted to work with me. He came in his costumes on the first day. So it was easy for me to handle the senior artists and my rapport with them helped me in directing them despite me being new for direction.
BVS Ravi: This will be the best album in the career of Gopichand. This will be the biggest musical hit for him. Chakri gave best music for the film and we are planning music launch on 09th January.
I’m following you very closely and I feel that the best about you is your quotes that are thought provoking and witty. Does that reflect your attitude towards life?
BVS Ravi: I write whatever comes in my mind. I write quotes to make people think. I love to write funny and witty but thought provoking quotes. I’m not sure if I succeed in my objective of making people think but I will keep trying.
I see that you are very close to Rana and I see Rana most on your time line. What is your relationship with Rana like?
BVS Ravi: Rana is a very down to earth and friendly person. He is an enlightened person and stands strong on ground. He never behaves like a scion from Ramanaidu family. Though he is knowledgeable in all crafts, he behaves like a new comer and he is extremely focused on perfection. He puts phenomenal efforts to put his best performance. He has ultimate will to make it big and I’m sure he will make it big.
I heard that you are doing your next film with Rana. Is that true?
BVS Ravi: No. Those are all rumors. Acquaintance alone won’t mean we are making movie together.
Who are your favorite directors?
BVS Ravi: K. Balachandar
Can you please tell us about the technicians who worked for your movie?
BVS Ravi: My DOP is the best Rasool Ellore. Editor Shankar who worked with RGV in KshnaKshnam is the editor. He has won at least 5-6 Nandi awards till now. Vivek is the art director who won a Nandi award with Nuvvosthaanante nenoddantana. I and Chakri share a lot of bond from Satyam days. I think I’m lucky to get best editor, DOP and music director for my film.
Do you read a lot? What kind of books do you read?
BVS Ravi: I read each and every book. I started with Chandamama in my childhood and even today if I find Chandamama, I leave everything and read Chandamama.
What are your future projects?
BVS Ravi: I haven’t thought anything yet though I have plans to make a bollywood film and I want to make a semi biopic English film too.
All the best for release of Wanted and I hope that you will have a successful debut on telugu screen and give us entertaining movies in the future.
BVS Ravi: Thanks a lot and this is the first time I’m giving an interview as a director and thanks a lot for your efforts.
by Brahma Mahesh
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