Director Sekhar Kammula is excited about the theatrical release of Love Story, after four years of his last outing, Fidaa (2017). Starring Naga Chaitanya and Sai Pallavi, the film captures the discrimination on the grounds of caste and gender. “Love Story is a feel-good entertainer that addresses the inequalities in our society. The story is set against the shadow of caste and gender-based discrimination faced by the characters of Naga Chaitanya and Sai Pallavi. How they overcome these tribulations is the crux of the film,” begins Kammula.
Asked if the film is inspired by incidents that took place in Andhra Pradesh or Telangana, he says, “Simply put, this film is a shattering reflection on the kind of society we live in. I have taken two of the serious issues in our society and woven them into a story. Frankly, I cannot call this film a regular love story and I can vouch for you that it has no similarities to my last release, Fidaa.” Naga Chaitanya, who plays a Zumba instructor in the film, has picked up the rural Telangana dialect for the part. Sekhar agrees that the character has given a new dimension to the actor. “From his diction to mannerisms, everything has been taken care of. I would say it was not just him, in fact, everyone in the direction department worked really hard to pull off the part. I can confidently say that you would not often see such characters and I am happy that Chaitanya breathed life into his role,” avers Sekhar.
On reuniting with Sai Pallavi, the Happy Days director says, “Sai Pallavi is a wonderful performer and you all saw her acting potential in several films. Her role is in stark contrast to what she played in Fidaa. Her character ruminates about her inner struggles and the plot itself is such that it adds so many layers to her role.”
Incidentally, Sekhar is known for introducing new talent to the industry and grooming them into stars. This time, the Life is Beautiful director has introduced Pawan Ch as the music composer of Love Story. “Pawan is a former associate of AR Rahman and I knew him for a long time. I felt the story needed rooted music and thought that being a Hyderabadi, Pawan can absorb the local flavour. He exceeded my expectations and the success of the audio is a testament to his hard work. I am sure he will have a bright future.”
Sekhar believes that Love Story is close to his heart and is confident that the audience will like it with all their hearts too. “There are many greatest love stories that have created history in our cinema. And Love Story too depicts a wonderful story and I believe it has got the potential to create history. Every filmmaker will set some expectations on his films. A few days ago, Nagarjuna garu said that Love Story is releasing on the same day as Prem Nagar (September 24, 1974). I would swell with pride if Love Story replicates at least 30 percent of what Prem Nagar achieved at the box office. I always thrive to give my best and believe that except me, no one else could direct a scene/film better. After ten years, I think of taking pride while showing all my films to my children.”
Up next, Sekhar is collaborating with Dhanush for a pan-Indian film. “It’s a thriller and we are planning to release it in Telugu, Tamil, and Hindi. The script has come out well and I am confident that Dhanush fits the bill perfectly. The film will go on floors early next year. Besides this, a reunion with Rana Daggubati for a sequel to Leader (2010) is also on the cards. By the way, it’s not a continuation to the prequel,” signs off Sekhar Kammula.