Welcome to Tollywood

Friday, August 10, 2007


This just goes to prove the lack of releases this year in Telugu. A one year old movie like “Desamuduru” has been re-released and it is being shown in at least two theaters in Hyderabad. The present set of movies which are showing are not block buster hits and the audience is craving for more. The re-release of older hits sometimes gets in the audience.



Tamil movie “Chennai 600028″ directed by Venkat Prabhu and produced by SP Balasubtramaniam’s son SP Charan is being dubbed into Telugu as “Kodithe Kottalira..”. The movie was a runaway hit in Tamil and deals with Gully cricket. It’s the rivalry between two gangs and how they fight in the end. Yuvan Shankar Raja scored music for the movie. The audio was released into the market through Aditya Music recently.



Guess who is the happiest man before release and upset and disheartened after the release of Mega Star’s “Shankardada Zindabad”? Well, it is choreographer turned director Prabhu Deva. He had seen beaming with joy when he got an opportunity to direct Chiranjeevi. The movie released with a fanfare and lots of hungama but didn’t get the expected response from public. There are many reasons and some are pointing their finger to Prabudeva.”I couldn’t recreate another wonder like my previous hit film but I did my best”, confesses the scapegoat of the whole issue to his close associates.

The fact is that the Gemini Film Circuit didn’t brother to do any publicity for the film. No promo is being shown in TV channels and even the stills of the film are very less. “The sole reason for the failure of SDZ is lack of publicity”, affirmed a trade pundit. Hopefully the mater will end here and people will take notice.



Bollywood actress Manisha Koirala who is out of work at last got some work to do with a film called “Tulsi”. This is supposed to be a remake of the Telugu film “Matrudevo Bhava”. The Hindi version has Irfan Khan playing the role which Naser did in Telugu. The Hindi Version too has been directed by Ajay Kumar. Manisha must consider herself lucky as she is getting some work to do after so many years. One does not remember her last appearance on the big screen.



Guess it’s time now for Mumaith and Abhinayasri to move over. Koena Mitra, the Bengali beauty is now foraying into Telugu. She will sizzle in a hot number for Venkatesh’s film “Tulasi”. The song has been recorded and news from the sets reveals that it will be as hot as Yana Gupta’s ‘Aakaleshte Annam Pedatha…’ from SDZ.


Interview with Mamta Mohandas

Mamta Mohandas. The hottest heroine in town! She is the new sensation in Tollywood. Like Illeana made a lot of buzz with her maiden film, Devadas, Mamta Mohandas is creating stir now even before her first film, Yamadonga, hits the marquee. Though the smashing beauty was replaced in couple of films before Yamadonga happened, she didn't give up and strived hard to get a foothold and already won a name for herself as a singer. She sung hit numbers like 'Rakhi..Rakhi' from Rakhi, '36 ..24..36..' from Jagadam, 'Akaleste Annampeduta..' from Shankardada Zindabad 'O Lammi Tikkareginda..' in Yamadonga and became an household name with them. she is busy with the Telugu, Tamil, Kannada and Malayalam films. Here are the experts from exclusive chitchat..
How did films happen?

I am Malayalee and brought up in Bahrain. I had finished my schooling there and came down to Banglore for the higher studies. While I was in the last year of my studies Hariharan (Malayalam director) saw me in a party and offered me the film Mayookam but I was not sure of accepting it. My plans were different. After finishing graduation, I wanted to study in UK and then to the middle East. So I took some time to accept the offer. I finished Mayookam my holidays, and it took more than four months to get the film released (November 2005). After that I started doing films from middle of 2006 and completed seven films so far in Malayalam.
Tell us about your entry into Telugu

It just did happen. I didn't plan it. Though I was offered movies earlier in Telugu, I didn't take up them. Then I got offer from M S Raju and Aata was supposed to be my launch pad but it didn't. Then I waited for an exciting movie offer with a great character. That I got from Rajamouli sir's Yamadonga. I was too happy when I heard about the gigantic project and importance of my role in the film. That is why I put my Tamil career on hold. We took 7 months to finish Yamadonga and it was worth it.
Malayalam film industry offers more performance-oriented roles than Telugu. Today Tamil and Telugu films are dominated with Malayalm girls. What do you see the reason for it?

Let us not underestimate Telugu movies. Its true that it is a male dominated industry but heroines are given importance here keeping their limitations in mind. I am talking with my experience in Yamadonga, so I could be wrong. Trust me, Telugu movies are doing very well in Kerala now. Recently Telugu movies are releasing in Kerala too. They are catering to what the audience is expecting from a movie.

Malayalam movies have also got into the realm of making movies that are entirely focused on heroes, where we have little to do. But yes, once in a while good stories are written..and meanwhile we Malayali girls would be busy elsewhere. Ha..ha..(laughs)

You have also become busy as singer? What do you prefer to be known - a singer or an actress?
As a singing actress. I am an actress now and a singer forever.

Are you also mastering the Telugu language? How is the dubbing experience in Telugu as you are new to the language especially the Nellore slang that you performed in Yamadonga?
(Ha..Haa) It was as tough I was trying to make the next-to-impossible possible. Even after recording 6 songs in Telugu now and having completed Yamadonga's dubbing, I must confess that I know very little. I am familiar with words but can not speak yet as its very different from my mother tongue Malayalam. But what one must understand is that there is a world's difference between recording and dubbing.

The Nellore slang has a weird tune and the dialogues of my character go in various modulations. It was quite embarrassing to say some lines because in the dubbing theatre, it would have sounded too funny to my mom, the directors and sound engineers sitting in the console unit. But dubbing has made my understanding of the language better and I thank Rajamouli sir for insisting me to do it. It was a pleasure and a privilege to voice my character. I know all my lines by heart now.
What are your next plans?
Right now Yamadonga is big for me. I want to take it easy and watch both my singing and acting grow at a gradual pace.

How is acting in a socio-fantasy like Yamadonga, particularly as one of the two main heroines while three other heroines share the screen?

It is one of the best characters that a heroine could have asked in her career. It is different and rare. It feels great to be part of such a big movie and I think that is what counts at the end.
Has Tollywood been working well for you?

Both as a singer and an actress, It has been working well for me, I didn't expect it though. Rakhee was something that came after an unpleasant surprise (replacements etc.) but was a great take off for me and everything that followed were pleasant.

With so many young heroines coming and going each year, do you wish to have a long-standing career in the Telugu film industry? What measures do you plan to take in this regard?
I wish to stay in Telugu for a while and wish to do both commercial and performance oriented films. And continue singing of course. Do I need to take more measures?

Do you feel particularly indebted to anyone about it in Telugu?

Yes. Devi Sri Prasad. Because my first recording as a playback singer came at the same time when I was replaced by another heroine for M.S. Raju garu's Aata. No hard feelings, though for that. So when I tasted success with Rakhee and now that I have even won the Filmfare Award for it, I have no regrets. Life is full of surprises, ain't it?
Say more about winning Filmfare Award

It is awesome feeling. Because it was my first song ever. It was a big dream that my first song should be for a movie and with a big music director and it came as a shock when Devi walked in while my photo shoot was happening. Devi and I were strangers to each other and Rakhee's recording happened on the same day.
You are also doing Homam now. Tell us about that...

Homam is directed by J D Chakravarthy. JD's direction is completely contrast to Yamadonga for me. He is from the RGV School and I have had a tint of an experience of RGV School after doing my last film in Malayalam titled Big B. It was directed by Amal Neerad who was cameraman for RGV's James and Shiva 2006. The kind of acting is very different and very natural or maybe underplay. JD can be difficult to understand sometimes but he is relaxed and cool and will spend a lot of time to get what he wants. I am glad I am doing a character that is way different from what I did in Yamadonga.

Jagapathi Babu is a very commendable hero. Great to work with him in Homam and is very accommodating and friendly.

Apart from Telugu, now you are busy doing all the South Indian language films. How do you manage all these languages?

First I was busy with Malayalam films and took a break after my film Madhuchandralekha released and went to Bahrain. When I came back, I was immediately offered Tamil film 'Sivapathikaaram' with Vishal, which I felt a safe bet and accepted it. then I was supposed to do the films like Aata, Don and also Okkadunnadu. I was first offered Okkadunnadu but I mulled over it I do not know about anything in Telugu field.

So they waited for some time and went ahead with another heroine. And I finally accepted the Yamadonga which I am glad I did. For the current film in Kannada opposite Suddep titled as Gooli, I liked the narration of the director for the film and accepted it. Only acting which matters not the language.


Simran opposite Kalyan Ram

Simran had acted with Balakrishna. And then with his brother Harikrishna. Now, she is doing a hot number with Kalyan Ram, the third generation hero in Nandamuri clan. Simran who has just made comeback and started her second innings with Balakrishna's Okka Magadu is doing a special item song in Kalyan Ram's Vijayadasami. At present, the song is being canned at Nanakramguda Cine Village in Hyderabad. Simran will begin shooting for director Kuchipudi Venkat's John Apparao 40 Plus from August 23rd. Simran who did perform a medley of songs at Filmfare Awards recently spoke to press and informed that she loves acting. "That is why I have come back to my first love," she said.


Sheela selected for Allu Arjun's film

Actress Sheela is going great guns. She is bagged another big budgeted film. Toywood has heared that producer Dil Raju has chosen Sheela in his current film with Allu Arjun. Bommarillu Bhaskar is directing it. Sources say Dil Raju is so impressed with her performance in Hello Premistara (he is presenting the film) and has decided to cast her opposite Allu Arjun.


Allu Aravind has his hands full

Senior producer Allu Aravind is on the spree of producing films. After long time, his banner - Geeta Arts - is making so many films and branching out. He has his hands full with four big budgeted movies. Already he is making big film with Pawan Kalyan and Trivikram which is fast finishing. On the other hand, Geeta Arts is also remaking Ghazini in Hindi with Aamir Khan. Which is again big budgeted and prestigious movie. Next on the cards are Charan Teja's second film to be directed by S S Rajamouli. This film will begin shooting somewhere in October/November.nd in January 2009, Allu Aravind will be producing another film with his son Allu Arjun which sees the coming together of successful team Allu Arjun and director Sukumar.


Chiranjeevi's wife to produce a film!

Gossip til now is that Chiranjeevi is gearing up for directing a film on his own। The latest we hear is that this special film (which is Chiranjeevi's 150th movie) is likely to be produced by his wife Surekha. Chiranjeevi is planning this special milestone in his career with much care and wants this to be his magnum opus. The film will be starting next year before that he works for his 149th film. Shankardada Zindabad was is 148th film.
Gunashekar - Chiru combo?
We came to know that Gunashekar is going to narrate a script for Chiranjeevi. The duo had earlier worked in Choodalani Undi. Let's wait and see whether this combination happens again or not.


A big politician ready to produce films

He is one of the most powerful politicians in Andhra Pradesh now. But his heart lies in films. He is fascinated towards filmmaking. Already his men are into film production but he too wants to join the bandwagon and produce a film. He has already approached a big time hero for his maiden movie which the top hero readily agreed. The film will glorify the producer's family 'history'. Watch out for more news on this front.


Mahesh Babu turns 33 Years, Athidhi in 'climax'

On August 9th, hero Mahesh has turned a year older. He enters into 33. But he is stayed away from any celebrations this birthday as he is grieving for his grandmother who passed away recently. He rather wants to celebrate his son Gowtham's first birthday that falls on August 31st.
Athidhi in Climax : But he is back to shooting for his film Athidhi. The film's climax scenes are now being shot in Hyderabad. we wishes him a Happy Birthday and his Athidhi may bring him a big success.


Gossip: Mohan Babu in Prabhas, Puri film?

The latest buzz doing rounds in Filmnagar is that Mohan Babu is likely to take up the tempting offer from director Puri Jagannadh. Mohan Babu is already doing a special role as Lord Yama in Yamadonga. He is likely to play same 'key' role in director Puri Jagannadh's next film starring Prabhas and Trisha. As per our sources, producer Puri and producer K S Ramarao have approached Mohan Babu for this 'important role' and asked him to agree. Let's wait and see whether he agrees or not.


Exclusive: Jiah Khan in NTR's Kantri!?

Bollywood hottie Jiah Khan (of Nishabd fame) is all set to make entry into Telugu. Sources in Mumbai close informed that she is likely to be paired with hero NTR in his next film titled Kantri. Though nothing has been finalized, we came to know that negotiations are going on. Hansika of Desamuduru has already been selected in this movie which is two heroine film. Ashwinidutt is producing the film while Meher Ramesh (former associate of Puri Jagannadh) directs it.


Happy Days audio through Big Music

Big Music, belonging to Adlabs, also enters into Telugu market. Shekar Kammula's Happy Days is its first audio album to be released in Telugu. The music of this film will be out in a week. Happy Days is gearing up for the release. Its lead actors were introduced to the media on Wednesday, August 08, 2007 at Green Park Hotel. The actors - Varun Sandesh, Nikhil, Vamsee Krishna, Gayatri Rao, Monali Chowdhary and Sonia - introduced themselves and thanked Sekhar Kummala for giving them a chance. The film is produced by Amigos Creations.


New hero to be introduced in M S Raju's " Vaana"?

M S Raju is gearing up for remaking the Kannada super hit, Mungaru Male. He is currently finalizing the cast for this film which is titled Vaana. Most likely new faces will be introduced in this film. He is now auditioning various artistes for it. Vinay who acted in Nee Valle Nee Valle is also considered but nothing has been finalized. The regular shoot might be delayed another week. Music director Devi Sri Prasad spoke to press and denied the reports that he is doing the lead role in the film. "That is not true," he said.


Yamadonga obtains U/A certificate

NTR’s Yamadonga obtained U/A certificate from censor board yesterday. This film is all set to release all over the world on 15 August on the eve of Indian independence day. Yamadonga is simultaneously releasing in USA with 12 prints in 22 theaters. Rajamouli directed this film. Priyamani and Mamata Mohandas play main leads. Mohan Babu donned the role of Yama. MM Keeravani scored the music.


Asha Bhonsle sings for Chandamama

After a long gap Asha Bhonsle rendered her voice to a Telugu song titled ‘naalo voohalaku’ in Krishna Vamsi’s Chandamama. KM Radhakrishnan (Anand fame) composed music for this film. Navadeep, Siva Balaji, Sindhu Menon and Kajal Agarwal played the mail leads. C Kalyan is the producer. The shooting of the film is almost complete.


Vijaya Dasami music on 23 August

Shooting of some important scenes for 'Vijayadasami' directed by V Samudra and produced by Edara Ranga Rao on the banner of Sai Sarvajit Movies with Nandamuri Kalyanram as hero, Vedika as heroine and Dialogue King Saikumar as villain is in progress. The film is the remake of a successful Tamil film 'Sivakasi'. Hero Kalyanram's is playing the lead character called 'Sivakasi'. He is doing the role of a person who is ready to sacrifice his life for the sake of friendship, while Saikumar is playing his brother. Suman and Jayasudha are playing their parents. The shooting of the entire film, except canning of a song, would be completed by August 20. It was proposed to launch the audio on August 23 and efforts are being made to release the film either on September 6 or 13. Srikanth Deva is scoring music for the flick.


Vikram-Trisha starrer Bheema Music Release On Today

Vikram-Trisha starrer Bheema Audio Release On Today

The Bheema audio released on Today. Harris Jeyaraj, who has been giving a series of musical hits, has composed music for Bheema.

Vikram fans, get ready to rock!


Kamal Haasan in court for “plagiarism”

Actor Kamal Haasan on Thursday appeared before the Madras High Court in connection with a plagiarism case relating to the story of his under-production film ‘Dashaavtaram’.

When the case came up for hearing on thursday morning, a Division Bench, comprising Chief Justice AP Shah and Justice P Jothimani, directed the actor’s counsel PS Raman to ensure that Kamal appeared before the court.

As per the directive, the actor along with his counsel appeared in the chambers of the Chief Justice around 2.30PM. The in-camera proceedings lasted nearly 30 minutes, after which he left.

Earlier, Senthil Kumar, who had filed an appeal challenging the single judge’s order rejecting his contention that the story was his, appeared before the bench along with his counsel.

The Bench later adjourned the case to August 13.

The single judge had dismissed Senthil Kumar’s petition after perusing the story line of both the parties.


Why Yuvan Shanar Raja and his wife Sujaya filed for Divorce?

Why did the couples Yuvan Shanar Raja and his wife Sujaya Divorce?

The news which leaked out from the some of the kollywood who did not wish to tell their names was unbelievable. News says that the couples were separate for the past 9 months. It looks like suffer and boss over whom the family members of Illaiyaraja gave was not digestible for Sujaya. Even when told about this to Yuvan it seems he did not hear for this and he took lightly. After their marriage Yuvan used to come late night to home without proper intimation and even it became a habitation for Yuvan to stay out. All this has made Sujaya wound a lot and she was left cornered. Yuvan who flies frequent to Bangkok, visits Pattiya over there, and also visits some luxury islands and has learned some bad habits while on tour is the information that leaked out so far.

Sujaya who was in a dilemma at last decided to file divorce. Though they have decided to divorce by mutual consent, Yuvan shanker raja has wholeheartedly accepted to write a house, a property which belongs to him on her name and which is located at Nungambakkam. If we see this matter, very well understood that after the divorce Sujaya will stay here. Will Yuvan not realise in this age to show more importance to his wife than his passion over music?


Yuvan Shankar Raja and his wife Sujaya Files for Divorce

Ilayaraja’s son and also a famous music director Yuvan Shankar Raja and his wife Sujaya filled a divorce in Chennai family court.

Recently if we see in the kollywood, lot of family issues like and Actor Prashanth and griha Lakshmi, then Actor Srikanth and Vandana. Now it’s Yuvan Shankar Raja’s turn.

It looks like Yuvan Shankar Raja’s household is not going well. The Junior Raja’s nuptials are on the rocks and the couple has consented for a divorce after surviving a marriage that lasted for a meager four-years. Yuvan and his wife Sujaya met in a musical event in London and fell in love. And 2003 they married secretly in London after getting approval of both parents, was held in March 2005 in India.

Opinion difference is cited to be the reason for the rift in the marriage life of the couple. Yuvan and Sujaya visited the court today in a same car to file the divorce petition in front of Justice Devdas.

Earlier, the couple was staying in Ilayaraja’s T-Nagar residence. With the mutual consent for separation, Sujaya is expected to move out of Raja’s T-Nagar residence.


NTR, Prabhas released Hello Premistara audio

NTR and Prabhas released the music of Sairam Shankar's movie Hello Premistara amidst resounding orchestra tonight at Hotel Marriot, Hyderabad. Supreme Music is marketing the audio. The heroes released the audio cassette and CD separately and presented them to Ravi Teja and Srikanth respectively.

Producers of the film Puri Jagannath and Dil Raju, music director Chakri, KS Rama Rao, B. Gopal, Sairam Shankar, heroine Sheela, director Rajkumar, Kandikonda, MS Bharani (cameraman) and Supreme Music owner Raju Harwani graced the occasion.

Naire Naire is my alltime favorite pick, says NTR
NTR termed the combination of Dil Raju and Puri Jagannath as extraordinary. Both together would create miracles in the industry. 'Here are my sincere prayers to God for the success of the movie and the audio as well. Hello Premistara will become terrific hit and would definitely lift the career graph of Sairam Shankar, giving him the first break. If there is a necessity to name five memorable songs in my life, my first favorite is Naire Naire song in Andhrawala. As long as I am in the industry and even after my leaving it, I will continue to remember Chakri for his excellent work. I am really thrilled hearing the song Ninna Monna in Hello Premistara', said NTR

Prabhas, Ravi Teja and Srikanth expressed their best wishes to the cast and crew of the film. Heroine Sheela and director Rajkumar thanked Puri Jagan and Dil Raju for fielding them in the movie.

I liked the clarity of his approach: Puri Jagan
'When Rajkumar narrated the story, I noticed perfect clarity in his story, screenplay and vision. I immediately said OK. It is also amazing that Rajkumar even maintained two options for everything. I really congratulate Chakri for his great music. When I received a tune in Bangkok, I was jealous of it', he quipped. Jagan further said it was a superb experience associating with Dil Raju.

I am thrilled to be working with Jagan, says Dil Raju
Dil Raju said that in view of hectic schedules, he preferred to jointly produce the film with Puri Jagan on Vaishno Academy, which gave several hits. 'I am thankful to Chakri for scoring extraordinary music. I am confident that the film will become a very big hit'.