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'Aa Okkati Adakku' taps into emotions around marriage: Director Malli Ankam


'Aa Okkati Adakku', starring Allari Naresh in the lead, is scheduled to hit the cinemas on May 3. In this interview, the director Malli Ankam talks about his background, the film's unique attributes, why the audience must watch it, working with Allari Naresh, and more.

I have completed B.Sc. Once during my college days, Dasari Narayana Rao garu came to our college as a guest for a cultural event. At that time, I wrote a skit. He appreciated my writing. Unknowingly, from then on, I became aspirational and wanted to enter the film industry. I worked with Bhanu Shankar, Sai Kiran Aduvi and some other directors.

The title has been zeroed in on in accordance with the story. The idea came from Naresh himself. This story has nothing to do with the old 'Aa Okkati Adakku' directed by EVV Satyanarayana. A spectrum of emotions undergirds marriage. And these emotions around marriage and wedding are sought to be exploited by certain elements. Our film portrays the same in an entertaining way while maintaining emotional integrity. That's why I call 'AOA' a thorough family entertainer.

Jamie Lever (daughter of Jonny Lever) plays the role of Naresh's younger brother's wife. Her character is very hilarious. We saw a web series done by her in Hindi. She seemed like a perfect fit for our character. She speaks very good Telugu. The roles essayed by Viva Harsha and Vennela Kishore are also entertaining.

When everyone asks about Allari Naresh's character about when he will get married, his reply is what the film's title is. He does it while swallowing pain. It is always painful for both the person in question and his family when everyone keeps asking about marriage. There is no direct/deliberate message in the film. Instead of focusing on the formality of marriage, we must focus on the substantive nature of relationships. We have also tried to show how careful one should be in the matter of marital relations.

When I approached Naresh, he was already busy with four films. As ours is a comedy story, I was unsure whether he would be enthusiastic. But just after listening to the first half, he agreed to do the film. He decided to put two other films on the backburner and prioritized our film. He loved how emotions and humour have been blended. Naresh's characterization and performance will entertain the audience thoroughly. Faria Abdullah's character is quite crucial. The story revolves around her character. Her comedy timing is strong.

We have taken inspiration from real life in writing the script. Some of my friends remain unmarried. They try to avoid social gatherings because of the fear of being questioned about their marital status. I can feel their pain. That way, 'AOA' is not entirely a work of fiction. As it is, Abburi Ravi is excellent when it comes to writing emotional scenes. His dialogues are excellent. At the same time, Gopi Sundar's songs and background score also helped in elevating the emotions.

I have known producer Rajiv Chilaka previously. Chilaka Productions gave us everything we needed. I worked on an animation film he did previously. I came to know that he wants to make a feature film debut. That's when I pitched this story.

Allari Naresh felt very happy after seeing the first copy. Since this is the title of a film directed by his father, we all took it with a sense of greater responsibility. The entire team is very happy and confident about the output.

Updated on April 29, 2024