After nearly 27 years Malayalam superstar Mammootty makes a return to Telegu cinema where he comes back to reprise the late chief minister of Andhra Pradesh YS Rajasekhara in Yatra. Mammootty stresses that it is impossible to narrate the complete history of a man in two hours. Yatra as such isn’t a biopic but an event-based film, where some important events in YSR’s life are chronicled. In between, there is primarily a ‘paada yatra’ and an episode on how he becomes chief minister of Andhra Pradesh. Yatra isn’t just about walking it is about meeting people, answering their questions and finding solutions to their problems. Showing a person walking for two hours can be boring, the director showed him meeting different people from different strata of society.
The actor is not conversant with Telugu but since he has a flair for many languages, he has managed to learn and dubbed this film. Mammootty states that ”I did not mimic YSR, I just picked the soul. He is an entirely different personality. I will be a poor copy if I walk like him and talk like him. I didn’t do any research. Mahi did it and that’s enough, I just followed.”Highlighting the similarities in languages, Mammootty says, “There are similar words in Malayalam and Telugu, around 50% of Telugu words are in Malayalam. We say ‘adbhutam’ in Telugu but pronounce it as ‘arputham’ in Malayalam. I kept pronouncing it like in Malayalam and took time to say it correctly in Telugu during dubbing.”He has completed 38 years in the film industry and has done around 380 films. His Tamil film Peranbu released this week. Mammootty has worked in a Kannada film and acted in an English film too. He feels that the audiences are not different, they might speak a different language but emotions are same. He is happy that a healthy phase is on in Telugu film industry, and that people are accepting commercial as well as meaningful cinema, supporting experimental stories.
Mammootty is happy that People pay the same amount to buy a ticket be it Baahubali or a small film. Social media has grown and the platform is being used to express an opinion. If you buy a television, you don’t buy components. HE is a component in the film industry and he can choose only a script and not a completed film to decide if I am doing a good film. Sometimes he also realizes his mistakes and corrects them. The actor feels that Everyone has talent, but one should work hard. As time passes, the actor explores new avenues. In many of his past films, the fans can compare it with what he is doing now, there will be a great difference in the performance and the type of cinema. That is how people want to see the actors now.