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Updated: January 24, 2013 00:36 IST

Multi-starrer Telugu movies are back

S. Sandeep Kumar
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Venkatesh and Mahesh Babu in 'Seetamma Vakitlo Sirimalli Chettu'. — Photo: By Arrangement
The Hindu Venkatesh and Mahesh Babu in 'Seetamma Vakitlo Sirimalli Chettu'. — Photo: By Arrangement

The next generation stars, Ramcharan Tej and Allu Arjun are likely to be seen together in 'Evadu'

What was almost alien in the 90s and in the last decade seems to be the flavour of the season now in the Telugu film industry. Multi-starrer movies, which used to draw cinema lovers in large numbers to the theatres in the past with hit combinations, are now back and hitting the headlines.

After the recent success of the Venkatesh and Mahesh Babu starrer “Seetamma Vakitlo Sirimalli Chettu”, next in the pipeline is Venkatesh (again!) with Srikanth in the tantalisingly titled “Shadow”. The next generation stars and cousins - Ramcharan and Allu Arjun are likely to be seen together in “Evadu”.

Venkatesh, in fact, seems to have taken multi-starrers a little bit more seriously than his fellow senior stars even if there are critics pointing out that he is game only with the younger lot!

He is planning to act next with Ram in the remake of the Hindi movie “Bol Bachan”, a total remake of evergreen classic “Golmaal”. Naga Chaitanya and Sunil are likely to come together for the Tamil remake of “Vettai”. Then, there is another interesting casting by S.S. Rajamouli, pitting Prabhas as the hero against Rana Daggubati in the darker role in his next project.

Till the recent spree of announcements, movie goers had just one or two fitting the category of multi-starrers in the last two decades. Venkatesh and Kamal Hassan’s “Eenadu” in 2009 – a remake of ‘A Wednesday’ and Allu Arjun and Manchu Manoj’s “Vedam” in 2010 perhaps can be considered.

However, this has not been the case in the past. Legendry actors N.T.R and Akkineni Nageswara Rao had worked together in many movies, followed by Sobhan Babu and Krishna in several movies in the 70s & 80s.

Since then, multi-starrers have become scarce due to various reasons. “Lack of good scripts, accommodation of dates, budget, actors’ willingness etc are all factors forcing producers to avoid making such films,” claims B. Ramakrishna, organising secretary of A.P. Cinegoers Association.

What is not said aloud though by the Filmnagar circle is that the stars had insecurities which had prevented multi-starrers till recently. Yet, the excitement among film-folk about the new trend is palpable. “Though the production cost may be high, the probability of recovering the investments is also more as fans will throng the theatres,” say distributors.

The final word is: “Ultimately, it is the story which determines a hit, multi-starrer or not,” says an exhibitor.

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