I’ve had the mindset of not causing discomfort to anyone since school days: Venkatesh Daggubati on being a non-controversial figure in Tollywood

'Saindhav', headlined by Venkatesh, is all set ftro release on 13 January. The action entertainer is directed by Sailesh Kolanu.

ByPrakash Pecheti

Published Jan 12, 2024 | 12:48 PMUpdatedJan 12, 2024 | 12:48 PM

Venkatesh's Saindhav is releasing on 13 January

Directed by Sailesh Kolanu, Saindhav stars Venkatesh Daggubati in the lead. Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Shraddha Srinath, Ruhani Sharma, Andrea Jeremiah, and Arya play crucial roles.

The story, which is set in the fictional port area of Chandraprastha, follows a police officer who turns into a gangster to save his daughter fighting a rare disease.

As Saindhav is scheduled for a grand release worldwide on 13 January, coinciding with Sankranthi, Victory Venkatesh opens up on being a non-controversial figure, the way he greets milestones, and how Saindhav will set precedence of churning out more such stories.

Q. Saindhav is your landmark 75th film. Does it weigh you down at this age?

A. Frankly speaking, the pressure of the number 75 doesn’t weigh me down. I feel it’s just a numerical milestone.

However, in the course of a film career, figures like 50, 75, and 100 naturally carry a sense of importance.

As for me, my approach towards them is very sincere when such occasions greet me. Each film is distinctive in its style. It has its share of hard work. I feel there’s still a long journey ahead.

Venkatesh at the promotions of Saindhav

Venkatesh at the promotions of ‘Saindhav’. (X)

Q. What appealed to you when director Sailesh Kolanu narrated the story of Saindhav?

A. There’s a beautiful daughter sentiment embedded in the narrative. The emotional action sequences are “atypical and away from the norms” for this genre.

I felt the action part was very organic. The film moves at a brisk pace, and I hope it will offer a unique backdrop.

Moreover, working with director Sailesh Kolanu has been a gratifying experience.

Q. The fictional city of Indraprastha—drugs and guns, gives a Hollywoodish look to the movie. How do you describe it?

A. This kind of film is a new experience for me. The creative team led by director Sailesh Kolanu has introduced a fresh and innovative concept, and the world-building in Saindhav is truly distinctive.

After Saindhav there’s a possibility of more stories taking a similar approach.

Also Read: Director Sailesh Kolanu speaks about the ensemble star cast in ‘Saindhav’

On his co-actors

Q. You have worked with many child artistes before. How did you find Baby Sara’s performance?

A. I love working with children.

Baby Sara displays a remarkable spark. She delivered a wonderful performance.

Q. Is there your contribution and suggestions to the Saindhav story?

A. Director Sailesh has crafted an excellent story.

Once I step into a project, I approach it as a team member, offering inputs only when required. My focus, however, remains on my acting responsibilities.

Q. There’s buzz that Saindhav will have a distinct look, and the climax will be brand new. Can you throw some light on it?

A. Saindhav is indeed a compelling story. The narrative takes a fresh and innovative approach. The climax is designed to be extraordinary and highly emotional.

The audience would enjoy watching the film on the big screen. The action sequences are well crafted, adding a touch of novelty to the overall experience. The film doesn’t have a similarity with his famed flick Dharma Chakram, which came in 1996.

Q. Bollywood star Nawazuddin Siddiqui makes his Telugu debut with Saindhav. How was the experience working with him?

Collaborating with Nawazuddin Siddiqui was truly amazing. He is an exceptional actor, and his journey from Gangs of Wasseypur has been quite remarkable.

In Saindhav, he portrayed the eccentric character of a Hyderabadi man. His style of infusing uniqueness even into ordinary scenes is amazing. His performance is outstanding, and each character in the film holds special significance.

Related: I insisted on dubbing my lines for my character in ‘Saindhav’: Nawazuddin

On his journey in Tollywood

Venkatesh in a still from Saindhav

Venkatesh in a still from ‘Saindhav’. (X)

Q. Spanning 75 films in Tollywood is a remarkable journey. How do you manage to keep a controversy-free journey?

A. If I knew the secret, I would gladly share it with everyone (laughs). Honestly, I don’t know.

Since my childhood, I’ve had the mindset of not causing discomfort to anyone, a trait I’ve carried from school and college days.

Q. There is news that you are doing a movie with Nani. Is it producer Venkat’s dream to bring you and Nani together?

A. I won’t comment on it. Let’s see, how it transforms (laughs).

Regarding the next flick Swami Vivekananda, (producer) Venkatesh said the script has reached an advanced stage and a couple of producers are considering it to bankroll.

“However, they are not fully satisfied with the script. There are two or three potential stories, but nothing is finalised yet,” he said.