Interview with Jagapati Babu

Jagapati Babu who shot to fame with Ram Gopal Varma’s film Gaayam, which turned out to be a classic of Telugu cinema
is back again in the sequel. Pravin Sri is making a sequel to Gaayam after 17 years. Read what Jagapati Babu has to say about this sequel Gaayam 2 –

How did Gaayam 2 happen?
Lots of directors approached me in the past with sequel stories to Gaayam. I never encouraged any of them because none of those stories are at par with the original. I got connected to story narrated by Pravin Sri. His narrative style and conceiving of the shots were good. I made Ram Gopal Varma hear the story.

He was impressed and asked me to go ahead. Hari (distributor) wanted to produce the movie, but this film demands big budget. I wanted to produce it at one point of time and Hari told me that he would buy the movie for three areas.

I went to Dubai and met producer Dharmakartha for the first time. I narrated the subject to him and he trusted me and invested in this project. He trusted us so much that he hasn’t seen a single frame till now.

Is Gaayam 2 a real sequel to Gayam film or just the theme is adapted?
Gaayam 2 is a perfect sequel in a real sense. The characters and story continues from Gaayam movie. We have used the visuals from Gaayam as back-story for this movie.

Tell us about Ilayaraja’s music?
I have earlier worked in few movies for which Illayaraaja composed music. I grew up listening to his music. Ilayaraja infused life into the movie with his background music and re-recording. We are banking on his re-recording for the success of Gaayam 2.

Tell us about the director Pravin Sri?
Pravin Sri is a protégé of Ram Gopal Varma. He has sound technique and innovative narrative skills. I also like his shot making abilities and composition of scenes. He brought out a rich product and I am pinning my hopes on Gaayam 2.

What is the reason behind the delay in production?
The script is really good, but I was worried about the runtime during the shoot of the movie. We stalled the shoot the midway to concise the script and made the final runtime to 2 hours and 10 minutes. Pravin Sri reworked on the script and made it perfect. It was like a blessing in disguise and we are getting a good release date due to the delay.

Has RGV seen the movie?
He saw the entire film prior to rerecording. He was impressed with it.

What is your gut feel on Gaayam 2?
Gayam made me a hero when I was nobody. Gayam 2 is releasing when my career is in slump. I am sure that Gaayam 2 will give me a new birth.

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