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'Malli Pelli' deals with a serious subject effectively: Pavitra Lokesh


Pavitra Lokesh debuted in Kannada cinema at the age of 16. Besides doing 150 Kannada films, she has also done a number of Telugu films. 'Malli Pelli' in Telugu and 'Matte Maduve' in Kannada will hit the cinemas on May 26. Since the film stars her rumoured husband VK Naresh, a lot of buzz has come about. For the unversed, her Wikipedia page says that, since 2021, Pavitra has been in a live-in relationship with Telugu actor VK Naresh and married him in 2023. "'Malli Pelli' is a well-made film as a subject. It deals with real social issues with a touch of emotion and sensitivity," says Pavitra in this detailed interview. She also talks about her partner, Naresh, whom she calls her support system.

I have always focused on the characters I play. I have been a lead actress in Kannada, and a character artist as well. A top director in Sandalwood cast me as the female protagonist twice. He had never repeated anybody before. I even won a State Award in Karnataka. In 'Malli Pelli', if you want to see me as the heroine, that's up to you. I was never in a dilemma about whether to do the film or not. I only had questions about how to interpret the character.

The story and incidents in 'Malli Pelli' bear a resemblance to many couples in real life. That's what I want to tell those who believe the film tells the story of my life.

Naresh felt that only I can do the role. He wanted us both to do the film. I too liked the story. Had even one of us (I and Naresh) not liked the story, director MS Raju garu wouldn't have done the movie. I didn't know that he would be directing the movie. He likes to treat even serious issues like a young filmmaker. His thinking is trendy and youthful.

The word 'bold' has been used in a narrow sense. If someone steps out of his or her so-called boundaries, we immediately label the individual as 'bold'. Societal norms are imperfect. That said, nobody can correct anybody. To each his own. 'Malli Pelli' is a bold film in the sense that the lead couple makes some "bold" moves. I can't say it is a work of fiction in toto. I can't say that it is completely based on my and Naresh's lives either. You will have a better realization when you watch the movie.

We are not targeting anybody in 'Malli Pelli'. In real life, I am the one who has been targeted in an ugly manner. My vulnerable situation has been exploited by some individuals to character-assassinate me. Coming out of the trauma hasn't been easy. Had I been alone, I would have had to sit alone at home or die by suicide. It was Naresh who stood by me and asked me to never be intimidated. But for him, my life would have been in ruins. God first destroyed the life I was living and asked me to rebuild it. I can now dream big and do many things, thanks to Naresh's support.

What I like about Naresh the most is the way he treats me affectionately. He is light-veined and can think through even grave issues calmly. I am not like that. What is the finest quality about him is that he lives in the moment. As a woman, I can't ask for more.

By the time I met Vijaya Nirmala garu, her health had taken a beating. I didn't get to spend much time with her. But I got to spend time with (Superstar) Krishna garu. I was fortunate enough to develop little rapport with him. The larger family (of Naresh) has embraced me. Societal acceptance is immaterial to me.

Our relationship is our personal thing. I and Naresh didn't want to share it with anybody after our families accepted our decision. But we were thrust into a controversial situation by others. So, we have had to navigate our way out of it somehow. 'Malli Pelli' hasn't been made to prove anything. By now, everyone knows that I and Naresh are a couple. I don't think society at large is bothered that we are a couple. Only some people have a problem.

Two days ahead of the movie's release, I have a prayer on my lips. I am also confident that it will do well commercially. The second half will be over before you know it. It is that gripping!

I will be seen in a film starring Nithiin. There is a Kannada film coming up. Nowadays, I am too occupied on the personal front.  

Updated on May 23, 2023