HYDERABAD: She is the ‘Insta Queen’ thanks to her viral Dubsmash videos that got several people go crazy. He got attention with the VIVA video where he tickled our funny bone with his illogical definition of optical fiber as ‘optical fiber is important for communication, and communication needs optical fiber’. Cut to 2017, they are the dance couple of Hyderabad and Vizag for their dance covers like
Guvva Gorinka, Adavari Matalaku Ardhale Verule and Me ME which have elements of a story, acting and, of course, some spectacular yet simple dance moves. Meet Deepthi Reddy and Shanmukh Jaswanth, who are the trending names among the youth of the twin cities and Vizag.
We caught up with the two to get an insight into their lives which is now filled with fame, attention, and hatred too. Scheduled for the afternoon interview, both arrived in their simple attire accompanied by their friends. Known as Deepthi Sunaina with several Instagram users, she is one promising college goer we should watch out for her Dubsmash videos.
Well just not that, but for her 3.3 lakh followers who support, love and even hate her for the videos. Ask her about how she feels being a social influencer, “It feels good, but I don’t like people hating me. It discourages me,” says Sunaina. At 19, she has taken herself by surprise when her videos suddenly started going viral after Dubsmash group re-posted her video to their official account.
“People suddenly started asking me for selfies,” said the Hyderabad girl from Karmanghat.
Fondly called as Shannu, the Vizag boy with all his hopes packed, juggles between Hyderabad and Vizag for his shoots and surely knows how he wants to be seen and perceived by people that will make him a hero.
“After VIVA, I got a few offers where my character was restricted to that of VIVA which didn’t interest me. I am looking for a meaty role,” adds Shanmukh. After completing his graduation in BBM from GITAM, Vizag, Shanmukh is a ‘Youtuber’. Now, with several dance covers, short films and parodies to his name, he is sailing to be an entertainer of the mass. “I need to achieve more, dance is just an add-on,” he says.
Do you use any special techniques to keep your followers hooked up to your videos?
Deepthi: Nothing, I just tag Dubsmash official page and track my posts with numerical hashtags.
Being young and a college going student, is it hard for you to manage your Instagram account and shoots?
Deepthi: I bunk my classes to attend my shoots.
How did you guys meet?
Deepthi: I am a big fan of his dance. I once sent him a Dubsmash of one of his short films and that’s how we met.Shanmukh: I personally like her Dubsmash videos, I told her the same and that’s how we shared similar tastes in dancing and acting.
How do you want to explain your dance chemistry?
Deepthi: It's like Rab Ne Banadi Jodi. We are just seeking identity of our own. We are collaborating for our mutual benefit.Shanmukh: People liked only those videos of us which we did the worst in terms of editing and shooting. Our chemistry is more of professional dance partners and nothing else.
Do you make any money from the videos you make?
Deepthi: Nothing as of now, I get money when we perform at any event.
Shanmukh: People think that we earn a lot, Honestly we make about Rs 10,000 for every video which goes for the making of another video. Money for me is secondary, I am doing what I love and that's what matters to me.
What were the hiccups you guys faced in collaborating?
Deepthi: I am a terrible dancer, I had to get to the pace of his dancing skills. His
choreography is difficult.
Shanmukh: She is a shy person, and initially it was difficult. But, we now manage to dance together. We had time constraints as well.
Take us through the process of selecting a song, choreographing and shooting the video?
Shanmukh: We have limited sources to shoot from because of copyright issues on YouTube. Shalimar music and Aditya music are the two we can use. Our aim is to give a theme to every video like love, sentiment and drama. Choreographing is again a two day process and then the shoot. It usually takes a week’s time to bring out a complete video.
What are the kind of promotions you do for your videos?
Shanmukh: We release posters on Facebook and Instagram before the video gets its official release and nowadays Instagram story is a must. Moreover, we want our content to promote our video not us doing it.
Where do you want to pitch your success from here?
Deepthi: Being an actress. I even got a movie offer but, had to decline because of my parental pressure.
Shanmukh: Actor, any time. Dance is just a way to tell people that I can also dance but, acting has been my primary desire.
Is there a professional who shoots your videos?
Shanmukh: No, they are my friends who are very passionate about shooting and editing videos.
Take us through the process of selecting a song to dance to, conceptualising and rehearsing...
Shanmukh: We dance to numbers which are popular and old. We always try to give a theme to our covers by adding story elements like that of love, loss or action. We usually rehearse for two to three days before going for a shoot.
Do you have any plans of starting up a dance academy?
Deepthi: No, never thought about it.
Shanmukh: Not yet.
Is it all cake walk for you guys getting fame and success?
Deepthi: Initially it was good but, later people started creating trolls and started posting hate content against me. I felt dejected.
Shanmukh: Although our aim is to entertain people some misunderstand and hate us. Occasionally, we get constructive criticism as well which really helps to improve.
Who do you guys follow on Instagram/ Youtube?
Deepthi: Just Shanmukh. I am an actor first, dancer later.
Shanmukh: Matt Steffanina and Melvin Louis for their choreography.
Who is your inspiration?
Deepthi: Actress Samantha, my dream is to be like her, carry her persona and be an independent woman.
Shanmukh: Surya and Allu Arjun. I admire the way Surya carries himself.
Deepthi: I am doing a short film along with Shanmukh.
Shanmukh: I am doing a short film and few dance covers in Vizag.