I never came to the industry with two paths in my mind, says Rakshit Shetty
Rakshit Shetty He has been working on his great work, Avane Srimannarayana , for the last three years. And while the movie is set for release on December 27, Rakshit takes some time off and gives himself up to a candid conversation with Bangalore Times. Excerpts
You had gotten emotional at the trailer launch of Avane Srimannarayana, recollecting your journey ...
Recently they asked me if I was going to get a movie out of my career or if I wanted to reorganize the movies I've worked on, how would I do it? My answer was that I would follow the same sequence, because I think it fits better. It has been an incredible journey and it has made me who I am today. I have had good and bad experiences and learned from both. I was just another boy from a small town, who had come to Bangalore and started his career with low-budget movies. And he dreamed that one day, he will make a Kannada film that reaches all audiences in the country.
If you could give some advice to the young Rakshit, what would it be? I would say: ‘Just follow the flow and follow your intuition. People will talk and give suggestions, but ultimately, you will have to do what works for you.
He has also had to deal with his personal problems that were made public. How are you handling things now?
I have never tried to judge my past events, because I believe that every person enters your life for a reason, and after their work is done, they leave. This is true not only in terms of romantic relationships, but also for friendships and work connections. I take it positively, because each life has its own journey. I don't want to stop others or myself. So, I think it's a fair game, as long as you're learning from every person you know and from every experience you have.
But do people who talk about you bother you?
No, I don't think it affects anyone in any way. We should take things in the right spirit and move on.
You had left social networks in the past, citing that it took a long time. And now, you're back again to promote your movies. How does it appear in your schedule?
It's not like I'm on social media just to promote my movies. And I don't plan or program social networks. I check it every time I have time. Right now, most of my work at Avane Sriman-narayana is done, so I am relatively free. Now I have more time for social networks than when we were working on the movie. I connect and even reply messages.
You have spent almost three years on this project. Have you ever been asked if you spend too much time in a movie?
When I'm working on a movie, my focus is just that. When I'm involved in writing or directing, I'm obviously more involved in the whole process. Again, when I write, I feel more attached to it. Sometimes, I also brainstorm and discuss action and dance sequences with the choreographer and writers. I'm fine with making a movie every two years, and I'm trying to balance this better.
How has your personal growth been?
I'll know better once Avane ... gets published and people start commenting on it. For me and my team, with each movie, we try to learn from our mistakes and improve. And I've been doing this since the moment I started my career. I know that my second short film was better than the first, and so on. When it comes to commercial movies, you must balance between the movies you want to make and what people are ready to accept, taking into account the large amount of money invested in it. I have explored more as an actor in Avane ... than in Kirik Party. As a writer, too, there has been growth. When i wrote Ulidavaru Kandanthe I didn't even have the basic writing skills. In Kirik party , I learned to keep the audience engaged.
Any character played by other actors that you wish you could play?
As soon as I feel that I need to play a particular character, I write it for myself. I take all the characters that I want to explore, so there is nothing in particular. And I constantly strive to play characters that I haven't played before.
How did you find so many like-minded people? Pushkara Mallikarjunaiah , Rishab Shetty Karm Chawla, who to work with?
It is probably due to the type of experience we had in our previous projects. Each project motivated us to work again. For example, when I work with Karm, I know that his images will be better than I had dreamed. So, I don't want to leave it. He feels comfortable working with me too. It's the same with Ajaneesh, Sachin, Pushkara and Rishab and all my team. We are joined by our love for cinema and our similar thinking process.
Have you talked about how Shankar Nag It is a great inspiration for you. Is there anyone at this time that inspires you?
All my motivation comes from the heroes of my childhood. Currently, I don't need motivation, because I know what my team and I can do. The kind of scenes that Mr. Kamal Hassan does or the mythological films of Annavaru (referring to the late actor Rajkumar) have motivated me. And of course, the way Shankar Sir made commercial movies and parallel movies and worked 24/7 inspired me a lot. Acting in approximately 40 films, directing 11 and directing more than 30 episodes of Malgudi Days, everything in the span of 11 years is definitely not a small task. It is unimaginable, and that has motivated me to work hard. The poet KS Nissar Ahmed Sir had once said that many poets inspired him and began to write like them. And one day, he found and wrote what he wanted to write. We are all in that process. Someday, I even want to meet in terms of cinema.
What do you think Kannada movies can take nationwide?
There is no formula for it. Just make good movies. The public is ready to accept good movies in any language. Especially, the northern public is looking for good films from the southern industries.
What advice would you give aspiring filmmakers?
Don't go asking people for opportunities. If it is meant to come your way, it will. Find and form your own opportunity and team. Collectively, a team can achieve better results. As long as your script is good and your movie goes well, things will be fine. You can start with a multiplex launch and gradually move on to larger projects. And there are also OTT platforms, so you don't really have to worry. While there is talent, take out your product.