'Sreekaram' will release in theaters on March 11. In this interview, Sharwanand talks about the film, what it seeks to convey, why it is relevant, his upcoming movies and more.
'Maharshi' was about weekend agriculture. 'Sreekaram' touches upon why farmers' children don't want to do farming. These days, a lot of us are preferring to buy organic produce. Given how important farming is, why can't it be made a lucrative profession.
'Sreekaram' doesn't peddle any impractical suggestions. It is all practical. We all have an agricultural background. Our ancestors were into farming.
Collective farming can solve the problems of poor farmers. Everyone becomes a beneficiary. That's what we have shown in our film. 'Sreekaram' doesn't focus on systemic issues. It's all about what individuals can do without depending on the system.
There is a short film on which 'Sreekaram' is based. But how many have watched it? This is a feature film with so many elements and emotions. Take 'Shatamanam Bhavati', for example. If someone were to tell you, 'Go meet your parents every once in a while', you would laugh at him. But when the film worked because it had a strong emotional core. 'Sreekaram' has got a love story between a father and a son. You have to watch the film to know what I mean by it.
If everybody leaves farming, who would be left to grow crops for us? 'Sreekaram' raises valid questions. There was a time when only a handful of crops used to be grown. Thanks to technology, we are able to grow crops even in desertified areas.
The next generation needs to believe that farming is profitable. We don't mean it when we say 'Jai Kisan'. Farmers are not treated properly.
My character in 'Sreekaram' has the target of doing farming right from childhood. He becomes a software engineer and takes to farming for the sake of his father's debts. When the son wants to do farming, his father dissuades him from doing so, saying that agriculture is not lucrative. But the son insists that he will stick to guns.
The day I realize that I am done with movies, I will take up farming. I had the best of time spent in agricultural fields for three months during the making of 'Sreekaram'.
Hydroponics has picked up in terms of popularity. Chiranjeevi garu is practicing it already. A number of software engineers are into hydroponics. Due to the pandemic, a lot of us have changed as persons. Before the lockdown, we wouldn't find time to say 'Hi' to parents.
This is my first film with Rao Ramesh garu since 'Gamyam'. It took 12 years for us to get another good story. Even senior Naresh garu was seen in only good films of mine ('Andari Bandhuvaya', 'Shatamanam Bhavati' and this one).
Sai Madhav Burra garu's dialogues are like the film's fertilizer. He has penned beautiful lines.
We had to grow real agricultural fields to shoot the film in real locations. During last year's lockdown, the whole field got washed away. We had to grow a new crop, again. That's why Gopi Achanta garu and Ram Achanta garu are Sreekaram's backbone.