'Ashoka Vanamlo Arjuna Kalyanam' is heading to theatres on May 6. Produced by Bapineedu and Sudheer Edara, it is directed by Vidhya Sagar Chinta.
In this interview, actor Vishwak Sen talks about playing an unmarried man past his youthful age, his upcoming movies, and the controversy surrounding him and a journalist, and more.
Seeing the controversy (regarding an altercation with TV9 journalist Devi Nagavalli) on TV, my relatives and friends were worried. They called me to find out what happened. It's all unwarranted and unnecessary personal disturbance! It was a good lesson. The ordeal lasted all of 48 hours. The audience standing with me has made me emotionally stronger. If I have to meet with Telangana Cinematography Minister Talasani Srinivas Yadav garu, I will meet him.
Coming to 'Ashoka Vanamlo..', we watched the final output a month ago. We are fully satisfied. It's a family entertainer. If it has received UA certificate, it's because of some small cuss words like 'Nee yamma' that have been used organically by different characters.
I want to reiterate that this is my career-best performance. The evolution of the lead man, the insecurities of the protagonist, his thoughts about what his relatives must be thinking about his jobless status etc. make him a layered character.
For my part in 'Ashoka Vanamlo..', I had to tuck in the shirt so that my tummy looks bloated. The director was not satisfied with me merely sporting a moustache. I was asked to gain 10 kilos for the role. Gaining weight was easy. But shedding the weight for my next film hasn't been as easy.
As a child, I would visit rural areas in different parts of Andhra Pradesh. I got nostalgic while shooting for this film in the Godavari areas.
At the start, I tried to avoid listening to the script because I didn't have an inkling of the character of a 33-year-old man. I respect family entertainers like 'Nuvvu Naku Nacchav' and 'Bommarillu'. That's why I took the plunge after I listened to the script. Actually, I had been expecting an action film!
Right from Arjun Kumar's walking style, everything needed me to put homework. The lines are evocative and powerful. In the trailer, the line about being unmarried at 33 is not a crime, carries so much weight.
I think May 6 is the right when our film, a family entertainer, has to be released. People are going to receive salaries by then and will want to spend their monies on a good film! I am confident that this is a wonderful time. The film will find its audience. There are enough screens catering to our film.
The title 'Ashoka Vanamloo..' may not be easy to understand but elders in homes will definitely convey the meaning to the young generation. The actual import of the title will reveal itself when you watch our movie.
Our film touches upon the issue of discrimination against female infants. The sex ratio is skewed because of the anti-female attitudes in our society. There is a hard-hitting dialogue against this attitude.
I am pro-marriage. I have a good opinion of it and I will get married one day! I will surely get married before I turn 30.
I have done 5 films so far. And each of the films I am going to do from now will be five times more effective. I am hoping that I will do movies belonging to different genres from now on. As an actor, I don't want to stay away from any role. It's my wishlist to play a woman. I want to play the kind of role Kamal Haasan played in 'Brahmachari'.
I am glad to hear that people are comparing me with Jr NTR sir. I like him a lot. But I want to carve my own identity. I am a huge fan of Tarak sir. People are showering so much love on me across social media platforms in the wake of the controversy this week. It makes me emotional.
I want to definitely become more than a Telangana hero. I want to go beyond both as an actor and a filmmaker. They say one has to prove himself in his forte before casting an eye on a new turf.
'Das Ka Dhamki' was supposed to be directed by Narresh Kuppili. Since I had so many inputs to give, I ended up taking over the project. I am doing a film titled 'Ori Devudo' and another entertainer titled 'Student Zindabad'. I want to do at least three films each year. If it is too demanding, I will do at least two films for sure.
If it is a multi-starrer, I want to team up with the likes of Vijay Sethupathi, Kamal Haasan and Fahadh Faasil.
I am the way I am. I have never ruminated over whether my aggressive nature is helping me or not.
It's true that, last year, I promised to change my name if 'Paagal' doesn't work. We had planned the film's release overnight, just four days before the release date. I knew no other way to grab the audience's attention and woo them to theatres. So, I made the promise.