HYDERABAD : Rajesh Sri Chakravarthy, grandson of legendary music composer Chakravarthy is making his acting debut with a thriller Shivakasipuram. The young actor is the son of versatile music composer Sri. While his grandfather and father are music directors, Rajesh had chosen an alternate path to be an actor. He says it was his father’s dream to see him as an actor but he was never ready for it until he gave up his first love cricket. “When I was a kid, my grandfather suggested me for a small role in Lahiri Lahiri Lahirilo. But, I was too shy to do that film and he gave up any hope on me. Eventually, I started playing cricket and represented Hyderabad U-19 cricket team.”
Justifying his late entry into films, Rajesh says, “After I grew up, I started watching films and slowly gained confidence. I used to act and dance at home. When I stopped playing cricket and sat idle for six-seven months, my father suggested me to take up acting and I pounced on the opportunity.
I joined Satyanand master’s acting institute, trained for three months and eventually got into the industry. Before taking up acting, I worked as an assistant to director Nandini Reddy for Kalyana Vaibhogame and acted in a short film Nuvvu Chala Hot Guru. One day, the makers of Shivakasipuram met me with the script and initially, I was apprehensive to sign the film. But the encouragement and suggestions I got from Satyanand master made me sign this project. I sincerely feel Shivakasipuram was a destiny.”
Rajesh realises the responsibility that comes along with his name. “As a kid, I was never fond of music and wondered how people listen to some song in a loop. I don’t want to get judgemental about my liking towards a particular genre. But, over the years my perception got changed and currently, I’m learning music. Although I like acting, I will also pursue a career as a music director. There’s always the onus of carrying on the family’s legacy in my mind.”
Describing Jr NTR as his inspiration, Rajesh explains, “I’m a huge fan of NTR. My father shared a great rapport with him. I met him only once but I used to talk to him over phone occasionally. He advised me to be mentally tough and never give up on anything if I wish to sustain and survive in the film industry. His words motivated me a lot and I respect him a lot. I can never forget the affection he showered on me.”Does NTR know about his debut? He says, “I don’t know. But, I would definitely meet him after my film releases. If everything goes as planned, the film will release this summer.”
About his role in Shivakasipuram, he says, “I play an auto driver who suffers from a psychotic behaviour on a full moon day. It’s an interesting role with a thrilling narrative. The film is set in a fictitious village named Shivakasipuram and the story revolves around plenty of superstitions. A major portion of the film was shot in Mancherial.” The film’s release was delayed due to various reasons. Speaking about it, Rajesh shares, “The film has many technicians from Kerala. So, it was really difficult to streamline everything and coordinate with everyone. In a way, it was delayed. I would like to thank my producer Mohanbabu Pulimamidi for passionately supporting the entire team.”
The debutant asserts that he always attempts to do different kinds of cinema. “I don’t want to confine myself to lead roles. I’m open to negative roles, even if its opposite NTR (smiles). The idea is to be part of good cinema.”
Rajesh said the death of his father has evoked a profound grief. “Until 2003, everything was fine. But once he was away from the showbiz, his ego started building. During the same time, the death of my grandmother made him more loner. He felt detached from the industry. He always wanted to live life on his terms and refused to budge. I’m missing him so bad.”Ask him how he feels about the release? He says, “I am a bit nervous and at the same time excited. I am praying that I will be able to live up to the expectations. My only aim is to work hard and prove myself.”