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Sandeep Raj and Suhas, friends who dared to dream big

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Ahead of their movie Colour Photo, friends Sandeep Raj and Suhas share their journey from making one-minute movies to discovering a foothold in Telugu cinema

Actor Suhas and director Sandeep Raj grew up in Vijayawada, in close by localities. But they didn’t know one another till the love for cinema introduced them collectively in Hyderabad, years later. The Telugu movie Colour Photo, which is able to stream on Aha from October 23, marks Sandeep’s debut as director and Suhas’s first because the protagonist.

Colour Photo turns its gaze on color, class and caste variations that are available in the way in which of romance between the characters performed by Suhas and Chandini Chowdary. The story begins in 1997 in a semi-urban situation and the movie was shot in locales close to Vijayawada.

Metaphor of societal hypocrisy

  • Talking about actor Sunil because the antagonist, Sandeep says, “Imagine giving a human form to the hypocrisy of the parents and society that stand between the lead characters. Sunil’s role embodies those hypocrisies.”

“I like films that reflect a region’s culture,” says Sandeep. A Telugu movie buff, he additionally seems to be out for different language movies that seize region-specific ethos, “like the Tamil films made by Vetrimaran, or the Malayalam film Kumbalangi Nights.”

When the movie’s co-producer Sai Rajesh outlined the story of an introverted dark-skinned man falling in love with a fair-skinned, clever younger girl and needed to tackle class and caste variations, Sandeep liked the thought and wrote the screenplay. “In the 25 days I spent writing, I visualised locales that would make the film look authentic. The Machilipatnam beach and Krishna University building are some places where time seems to stand still,” says Sandeep.

Setting the story within the late 90s, earlier than the cell phone increase, helped Sandeep discover the craving of the 2 lead characters: “During the lockdown, many of us stayed connected through video calls. Imagine the 90s. If parents opposed a boy meeting a girl, they wouldn’t be able to interact even if they lived in adjacent lanes,” says Sandeep.

Video route to cinema

Comedy has been Suhas’ forte; he shot into the limelight in 2015 by his YouTube movies and then collaborated with Sandeep to develop video content material for Chai Bisket web site and YouTube channel.

Sandeep and Suhas started with comedy. “We first wanted people to watch our content. Once we built a substantial subscriber base, we explored other genres,” recollects Suhas.

Before his stint with Chai Bisket, when pursuing B.Sc Computer Science in Vijayawada, Suhas enacted one-act performs, memes and skits. He then moved to Hyderabad and tried his luck within the films, in useless: “I loved cricket and cinema as a child. In college, I also choreographed dance performances and thought I could be a choreographer in cinema. I discovered my love for acting later.”

Sandeep’s focus was on drama and cultural actions throughout his B.Tech days and he was an enormous fan of S S Rajamouli. On a whim, he arrived in Hyderabad and auditioned for Baahubali in 2013. “I was just 21 and didn’t fit the bill of a well-built guy that the Baahubali team was looking for,” he recollects.

However, his humorous posts on Facebook acquired seen by Chai Bisket web site. “They wanted me to write and were willing to pay, so I took it up. We began with one-minute videos and slowly increased the duration. Our videos became popular,” recollects Sandeep.

Moment of recognition

A turning level for each Suhas and Sandeep was their brief movie Athiti, which went viral. The Telugu movie trade took discover.

Suhas was supplied character roles with a contact of comedy. He started with Padi Padi Leche Manasu, however with Majili he acquired seen. A number of movies adopted — Agent Sai Srinivasa Athreya, Dear Comrade, and extra lately Uma Maheshwara Ugra Roopasya.

Meanwhile, Sandeep acquired writing alternatives. He has co-written the screenplay of the forthcoming movie Aakashavani with director Ashwin Gangaraju, and penned the dialogues for Nagesh Kukunoor’s Telugu movie Good Luck Sakhi.

Sunil and Sandeep Raj on the sets of Colour Photo

Sandeep and Suhas’s collaboration for Colour Photo occurred on the insistence of Sai Rajesh: “He said Suhas would be apt as the hero. I hadn’t thought of my friend as a hero until then,” Sandeep confesses.

Suhas was jittery. He was doing properly as a comic book actor and the cash was first rate too: “I was scared that I will lose opportunities trying my luck as the hero,” he says.

He and his spouse went on a brief journey to Tirupati. Contemplating on the Tirumala hills, Suhas determined to make the leap: “I took a risk moving to Hyderabad from Vijayawada, why not take another risk with this film? More importantly, I loved the story,” Suhas causes.

Suhas is counting down days for the digital launch and Sandeep is raring that the movie reaches a large viewers: “It would have been great to have a theatrical release. But given the scenario, I want people to watch this intense story wherever they are, without the fear of COVID-19 in a crowded environment,” says Sandeep.



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