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Family entertainer

`Dil' Raju is on a hat-trick trail of successes with `Bhadra.'



Meera Jasmine and Raviteja have reason to smile.

AS YOU enter Ramanaidu Studios at Nanakramguda, you find a cluster of buildings built in rural to modern architecture.The studio, named cine village, has also glimpses of the old world village settings to film rural themes. In one of those buildings with a sprawling lawn in front, the shoot for Sri Venkateswara Creations, `Bhadra' is progressing.

Avoiding stepping on the cable wire from the generator van as you walk into the building crossing the floral fountain on the soft Australian grass, one can come across producer Raju better known as `Dil' Raju after his maiden super hit, discussing with his unit regarding the arrangements for the press conference that follows the day's shoot.

Debut director Boyapati Srinivas with a sheet of paper in his hand watches his lead actor Raviteja at the steps that leads to the main hall. Cinematographer Arthur A. Wilson is taking a few close up shots of the hero. Heroine Meera Jasmine emerges from an anteroom. The atmosphere is relaxed as the talkie shoot has been almost completed barring some patchwork.

Relaxed atmosphere

"After this day's work we have to shoot the songs," says Raju with his characteristic grin. After `Arya,' his second consecutive big hit, he is introducing a new director once again. "When Srinivas narrated the story, I found the central point in the theme has potential for a box office success. I listened to the story and viewed it as an audience.

For three hours he had narrated the story shot by shot like showing me a full-length film. It is a total family entertainer with action backdrop. I can add that there is a love story undercurrent to the main theme. So it is a new style in entertainment," smiles Raju.

Raviteja plays a role that is a cakewalk for him. A cool and calm person, if rubbed on the wrong turns aggressive. "Let's put it this way. How does a peace loving person behave when he is upset and the emotional upsurges that he vents to regain the cool attitude is what the central character has to play in this theme. There is scope to show three variant emotions in one character. Raviteja is doing a marvellous job of it," adds Raju.

As Meera Jasmine has an animated conversation with the director, looking at her Raju has a word of praise for the national best actress award winner. "We needed an actress who can combine innocent looks, glamour and performance. Meera is an apt choice.

You know the total story runs on the heroine." Prakash Raj, not in the day's shoot, has a key role to play too. "A fresh role for him with a new accent in dialogue delivery," sums up the producer.

The director is still taking the close up shots of the hero at the steps.

As the lunchtime approaches , the unit hands make brisk arrangements on the open space in the opposite building. Ravitheja's macho look reminds us of the action backdrop to the main theme. "The fights choreographed by Ram-Lakshman run along with the story like four of the six songs tuned by Devi Sri Prasad," informs Raju. "The other two songs are duets that we will be filming in Kudremukh and Bangalore."

Now it is time for press conference. The producer and the director wait for the hero and the heroine to emerge. After a few minutes they too join the gathering. A huge vinyl hoarding is placed in the backdrop with the lead actors and the title and main credits on it. "We now confirm the title, `Bhadra' and it comes with a tag line, `A true lover,' announces Raju. " `Bhadra' is the hero's name and the caption indicate the nature of the film," with a mischievous smile he answers a scribe. "To get his girl what sort of adventures he has done and the sacrifices he has made, all that you have to see on the big screen on April 29," says the man who had two hits in a row and is aiming to complete the coveted hat trick.

M.L.NARASIMHAM

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