Madhunandan is basking in the success of ‘Gunde Jaari Gallanta Ayyinde’, he believes that nothing in life comes without a struggle

If you are a Telugu movie buff, you’ll recognise his face, but might not know his name. Madhunandan has been in the industry for over 13 years with little luck; with Gunde Jaari Gallanta Ayyindhe Ayindhi, things changed. Madhunandan was the second lead in the film and he is milking its box-office success. Sitting with him at a café in Begumpet, you can sense that people are looking at him; a girl pops over to say Hi. “All this is fairly new to me. Although I have been a part of the film for so many years, I have never been a part of a success this big,” he smiles.

Madhunandan was picked up by the casting director of Nuvvu Nenu (a film by Teja); “I have always had a desire to work in films. I got lucky as a 19-year-old boy to be cast in that film,” he says. Luck did not favour Madhusudan in the beginning; he had to make-do with small pickings. “I had no support, I wasn’t getting roles and I wasn’t getting recognised,” says Madhunandan. He fondly recalls a few films like Saye, Okka Vichitram and Lakshmi Kalyanam, “I did a negative role in Lakshmi Kalyanam and people recognise me from that film,” he beams. The trouble he says came when none of these films did well at the box office. At 28, with no support and no clear career path, a worried Madhunandan got a Masters in Business Administration from Osmania University and decided to take a break and relocated to the USA but even there, his mind was always in the industry. “I remember scheduling calls with people from the industry every weekend. I was eager to know what was happening in the industry. I was desperate to get back,” he smiles. Within two years, Madhunandan moved back to India, but with what confidence? ‘Nitin,’ he replies promptly. “He convinced the director to cast me for Gunde jaari…,” he says.