Movies

Kannada director Naveen Reddy B's long wait pays off with 'Khaki' release

The film starring Chiranjeevi Sarja and Tanya Hope, is about a group of people come together to sort out civic problems

After 16 long years of working in the Kannada film industry as an assistant and an associate director, Naveen Reddy B emerges from the shadows as an independent film director. His début directorial venture titled Khaki releases on January 24 across the State in 200 theatres.

The film is making news even before its release, thanks to the production house, cast and crew. The film is produced by Tharun Shivappa, and has Chiranjeevi Sarja with Tanya Hope in the lead.

Kannada director Naveen Reddy B's long wait pays off with 'Khaki' release

Naveen says Sarja plays a cable operator in the film and not a cop. Then why is the film called Khaki? “The story, written by Vidhyadhar, talks about how a group comes together to act like a parallel police force to sort out issues that are normally ignored including garbage disposal and land mafia. The many issues we face today, are presented in a typical commercial manner.

“The film, is about land, which has good value, but is converted into a dump yard. The land value goes down and the Mafia buys it for a song to build commercial buildings.”

Kannada director Naveen Reddy B's long wait pays off with 'Khaki' release

Though the film will not have subtitles, talks are on to release the film dubbed into Tamil later. “As of now the Malayalam version is ready and will release two weeks after the Kannada release.”

About the lead pair, Naveen says, he was sure that Sarja would be in the lead the moment he was asked to direct the film. “But when it came to Tanya, we thought a bit as the role is that of a middle class girl, which is quite the opposite direction of where Tanya comes from. We are happy with the result however, as this is a new look for Tanya; she has not been seen like this in any of her earlier films,” Naveen says with a smile.

Kannada director Naveen Reddy B's long wait pays off with 'Khaki' release

Why did it take him 16 long years to don the director’s hat? “Sadly, this should have happened in 2008. It is not that I did not get offers, but I became choosy. Either I did not like a story, or the production team backed out and then I had people approach me with money and demand that they be the hero of the film. That was the most trying time for me. I almost wanted to quit the industry, but what kept me going was the other offers I got to work as an associate director. I told myself, I had to wait for the right time.”

His experience in the industry has been a boon. “I came here when I was 17, now I am 34. And when I sat in the director’s chair, I discovered that nothing hampered my peace on the set as I had been there and handled that.”

Naveen, who hails from Andhra, says that he is the only one from his family to venture into films. “My father and brother are in the defence, I studied in the Army School here and grew up watching Kannada films. Though my family was keen I too take up a career in the Army. When I watched Upendra’s Om I knew this was the path I would tread.”

Life for Naveen also seems to have a full circle, as in it was Upendra who launched the teaser of Naveen’s Khaki. Naveen has words of praise for Bala, the cinematographer of his film. “He has worked with Rajamouli in almost all his films. We have been close friends for years and Bala offered to be the cinematographer for my film without even talking about the payment. He has been the backbone of the film and my journey while making Khaki.”

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Printable version | Feb 21, 2020 7:01:36 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/nkannada-director-naveen-reddy-bs-long-wait-pays-off-with-khaki-release/article30631845.ece

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