Actress Neha Sshetty is playing the character named Sana in the much-awaited movie Rules Ranjann which is scheduled to hit screens worldwide on October 6.Starring Neha and Kiran Abbavaram in the lead roles, the film also stars Vennela Kishore, Subbaraju, Viva Harsha, Hyper Aadhi, Meher Chahal, Ajay, Makarand Deshpande, Atul Parchure, Annu Kapoor and Abhimanyu Singh in key roles. The film is directed by Rathinam Krishna, the son of prominent producer-director A.M Rathnam, and produced by Murali Krishna Vemuri and Divyang Lavania under the banner Star Light Entertainment Pvt Ltd. Ahead of the movie's release, the actress shared a few insights about the film and her character with the media on Monday. Here are the excerpts from the interview...
Do you think you're off to a solid start with back-to-back successes at the Telugu box office?
I am not sure, I feel there is still more to achieve. But I am so glad and grateful for whatever I've achieved in a very short span of time.
Your career took a sharp turn with DJ Tillu, how do you see it?
DJ Tillu came as one full circle because I started with Mahbooba which didn't work well. Then I flew to New York to study film acting. I returned to India with hopes aplenty, immediately the Covid-induced lockdown came as a death knell. I had to wait for some more time. That was when I was offered the character Radhika in DJ Tillu. When the film was released in theatres, audiences instantly got connected with the character. I am happy with the way it was received by audiences.
How is your character in Rules Ranjann different from the previous movies?
I play the character Sana in Rules Ranjann. Sana is not a selfish character like Radhika in DJ Tillu. She is a happy-go-lucky girl hailing from Tirupati. She is adventurous and wants to explore the world. As a character, Sana is glamorous. She is cute, bubbly and a girl-next-door character. How does she bump into Mano Ranjan (played by Kiran Abbavaram)? How the journey sets into motion in the story that has thrills and frills.
Have you found anyone who shares similar characteristics of Rules Ranjann in your real life?
I think it is the director Rathinam Krishna who goes by his set of rules at any given time. He would have a fixed daily routine when he steps onto the sets. He is so focused. That's because of being born in a filmy-background family. He would have a clear idea of what he has to do.
Music director Amrish's name is trending of late, for the music that he scored for Sammohanuda single, on social media. How it has been to work with him?
I've not met music composer Amrish personally. All I know about him through press meets and promotional events of Rules Ranjann. Like you all, I became a fan after hearing his work. The way he scored the music is amazing. I am ever grateful for him. I feel it is because of the team we could make this project happen. Amrish, Shreya Goshal, Rathinam Krishna, Kiran Abbavaram -- all came together to make the project happen.
How different is Rules Ranjann as far as the romantic track is concerned?
A love story is a common ingredient in any commercial potboiler. Rules Ranjann, the whole story is quite different. There is a conflict in it. There is a comedy. It is not the routine boy-meets-girl story. It has a captivating love theme, treated so uniquely. I am sure audiences would enjoy the film as much as they enjoyed my previous films.
What's the most challenging part in Rules Ranjann for you?
The most challenging task is to dance to the Sammohanuda single. If you observe the song, I had to dance in the fire, water, amidst flowers, and by the poolside. Quite a few interesting things I had to try. The picturisation was quite tough. But in the end, it's all worth it. Otherwise not all challenging.
Could you share how the chemistry worked out with Kiran Abbavaram?
As an actor Kiran is so cool. As a person, he is polite, humble, quiet and calm on the sets. And I am the opposite (laughs). Even after going on to the sets, I would ask him about his day. Just to have a good-laugh-out conversation to have a bit of ease into it before rolling the camera. And I do the same with the director and other actors. And having Vennela Kishore garu on the sets is pure fun.
How do you feel ahead of Rules Ranjann's release on October 6?
I am nervous whether Rules Ranjann will be a hat trick one for me. No doubt, we all have worked out pretty well, bringing out a wholesome entertainer. But there is a slight nervousness in me. After DJ Tillu, I was skeptical how audiences would receive my character in Bedurulanka 2012, donning a cute, village girl from a conservative family. I had the doubt whether fans would accept me. But my inhibitions were all shattered when it was released in theatres. I am sure the character Sana would surely strike a chord with fans.
Rain songs were quite popular in the past. Now the rain song featuring you has become famous of late. How do you feel?
When it comes to rain songs, famous yesteryear star late Sridevi comes to my mind. I've been a big fan of her work. She never had boundaries after starting her film career at a very young age. That's the kind of actor I want to be. I am happy that my first song has become massive and also has a rain sequence in it.