Tamannaah considers ‘Baahubali’ her re-launch project

July 06, 2015 07:37 pm | Updated April 01, 2016 12:07 pm IST - HYDERABAD:



Tamannaah Bhatia, like her co-stars, has been talking at length about Baahubali in the last few days. She shows no signs of weariness as she settles down for another interview session. “ Baahubali is a re-launch for me,” she says, confident that the audience will appreciate her as warrior princess Avantika. “The promos show me as an angel-like Avantika. There’s more to her,” says Tamannaah.

The actress came aboard the film a year after her co-stars Prabhas, Rana and others. She had to orient herself for the period setting and had less time to do so. “The others had trained for six months and the team had already shot some portions of the film. But alongside the shooting, they were allocating time for preparation and that helped me. We had costume trials, dialogue sessions and mock shoots,” she says.

Captain cool

Tamannaah says she was in awe of Rajamouli and was taken in by his precise instructions, ability to clear an actor of any doubts, and keep calm amidst shooting tough sequences. She also lauds the effort put in by Rajamouli’s family members. “Karthik, the director’s son, was the chief assistant director. On some days I felt the shooting wouldn’t happen if he wasn’t around. Rajamouli’s wife Rama, along with Prashanti, was designing costumes. All of them, and line producer Valli, were handling a large team,” she says.

Less is more

Unlike her co-stars Prabhas and Rana, Tamannaah could work on other projects simultaneously. “Prabhas decided to devote more than three years for this film and Rana didn’t accept any other film while shooting for Baahubali . Since most commercial films aren’t riding solely on the heroine, we are a liberty to do other projects. In comparison to my peers, I take up lesser number of movies at a time. I can’t work on more than two or three films at once,” she says.

Tamannaah is fairly fluent in Telugu and says it wasn’t difficult to understand the dialogues required for this period film. “The language one hears in Baahubali is from a different era, but it is also something the younger generation today will understand,” she says. She says she didn’t look for reference points to play a warrior princess and went by Rajamouli’s instructions.

She credits Rama and Prashanti for designing believable costumes. “Period films sometimes become costume dramas, with over-the-top outfits. The film is set in an era when gunpowder wasn’t discovered. My clothes were in cotton and leather. We didn’t use synthetics. The angelic white outfit that you see of me against the waterfall was made using organic cotton,” she explains.

The actress has dubbed for the Hindi version. Her previous Hindi films, like Himmatwala and It’s Entertainment , didn’t win her any brownie points. She doesn’t brush away the criticism. “We actors don’t hesitate to accept compliments. Likewise, we have to take criticism. For instance, I didn’t know anything about fashion before working in the Hindi film industry. When my outfits were criticised, I knew I had to work on how I turned up for events.”

Overcoming fear

If there was a change she noticed in herself after Baahubali , it was getting over her fear of heights. “I wouldn’t even get on to adventure rides in amusement parks. Forget horse riding, I can’t ride a bicycle. In this film, I have a sword fighting sequence and I did my first rope stunt scene. Now that I’ve tasted action, I am ready for more,” she says, highlighting the portions she shot in Bulgaria in the biting cold among her best scenes.

Before she signs off, she stresses, “A period film of this scale hasn’t been made in Indian cinema. Rajamouli’s films are driven by characters, than stars. He gave us freedom and inspired us to live our parts.”

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