Telugu star Sudheer Babu is looking forward to the release of his film ‘Sammohanam’ directed by Indraganti Mohan Krishna on June 15. While he may be Tollywood superstar Mahesh Babu’s brother-in-law, Sudheer Babu has cemented his place in the Telugu film industry on his own merit. In this exclusive chat with Latha Srinivasan, Sudheer Babu talks about his upcoming film, his Bollywood co-star Aditi Rao Hydari who makes her debut and more.
NewsX: Tell us a bit about ‘Sammohanam’.
Sudheer Babu: I play a children’s book illustrator in the film. This role is closer to real life; nothing filmy about it. It’s a new age love story but at the same time, it’s not like people talking rubbish. You get to see the complexities and maturity of the relationship. In the earlier romantic roles I have played, there was more melodrama. This is like the audience is part of the family; an immersive cinematic experience.
NewsX: What was it like working with director Indraganti Mohan Krishna?
Sudheer Babu: In the Telugu film industry, there are many good directors but very few have good command over the Telugu language. And Indraganti Mohan Krishna is one of them. I learnt a lot from him like how to prepare for scenes and we had reading sessions where we prepped a month before the shoot. Even on set, how to create the right atmosphere and have patience. I learnt a lot as a person too.
NewsX: Bollywood actress Aditi Rao Hydari is making her Telugu debut with you in this film.
Sudheer Babu: Aditi is a fantastic actress so I went fully prepared to shoot! (Smiles) I watched some of her films. She’s talented and beautiful and one thing will not go unnoticed, after the release of the film – many actresses have come from Bollywood to Tollywood, but have never dubbed in their own voice. Aditi has dubbed for ‘Sammohanam’ and dubbing for director Indraganti Mohan Krishna is a tough job! I usually dub in a week but for this film, it took me about 20 days. He is very particular about pronunciation and I know how tough it would have been for Aditi but she has pulled it off!
NewsX: How are you feeling now that the movie is releasing?
Sudheer Babu: There are a lot of positive vibes. I think it’s the best of all the films for me. Even in terms of the number of theatres, it’s releasing in it’s huge so we are expecting a huge opening.
NewsX: You and your brother-in-law Mahesh Babu are both actors. Any competition at all between you?
Sudheer Babu: There are 100s of actors in Tollywood and everyone has enough work. But with Mahesh Babu, it’s a different ballgame altogether – he’s in a completely different league. With Mahesh, it’s not like he will attend a function or say something good just like that – you have to earn it, even if you’re family. He has principles and it has to be worth it. He needs to see your hard work, dedication and motivation, and I think that’s how it should be. I think he sees that and his support has always been there for me.