The launch event of the Malayalam version of Chiranjeevi-starrer Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy was held at Kochi yesterday. As the rest of the team—director Surender Reddy, producer Ram Charan, Tamannah Bhatia and others—couldn’t make it to the event, it was attended by the superstar himself, who was welcomed by actor Prithviraj, director Arun Gopi, and distributor Krishnan Sethukumar.
Speaking at the event, an excited Prithviraj applauded the quality of the footage on display, calling it “on par with international cinema”.
Addressing Chiranjeevi, he said, “I salute Ram Charan for mounting a project on this scale with a legend like you. Everything looks top notch. I personally do not remember you looking more stylish in any other film. You look so good in this.”
Prithviraj wished the team and said the Telugu industry has inspired Malayalam filmmakers to dream big by making the Baahubali films. The actor revealed a surprising bit of trivia. “After seeing the footage, I feel sad because Chiranjeevi sir had called me to act in it but I was caught up with other projects. Now I wish I was part of it,” he said.
Prithviraj also shared that Chiranjeevi has bought the rights to the Telugu remake of Lucifer. Chiranjeevi is set to star in it.
After taking the stage, Chiranjeevi thanked Prithviraj and said, “Prithviraj’s presence here made my day. After seeing him in Aiyya, I wanted to give him a role in Sye Raa. Unfortunately, we couldn’t cast him because he was in Spain for some other movie. We miss you.”
Chiranjeevi, whose association with Malayalam cinema began with the Telugu remake of the 1979 film Love in Singapore starring Prem Nazir, thanked Mohanlal for doing the voiceover for the Malayalam version of Sye Raa.
On his decision to play the main character, Chiranjeevi said, “I wanted to play a freedom fighter for a long time. When I heard the story of Sye Raa—a hero who rebelled against the British much before anyone else—I was tempted to do the movie. But budget constraints held us back earlier. Now the market for such films has opened up after the success of Baahubali, and this gave us the confidence to make these pan-Indian films. Sye Raa is an Indian film with emotions everyone can connect to,” he said.