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Exclusive! Saddu Vicharane Nadeyuttide is an engaging thriller, packaged as a commercial entertainer: Rakesh Maiya

The Magalu Janaki actor plays the lead in the Bhaskar Ninasam directorial that is releasing in theatres tomorrow.

Exclusive! Saddu Vicharane Nadeyuttide is an engaging thriller, packaged as a commercial entertainer: Rakesh Maiya
Rakesh Maiya plays the lead in Saddu Vicharane Nadeyuttide
  • Prathibha Joy

Last Updated: 02.04 PM, Nov 24, 2022

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Magalu Janaki’s lead character Niranjan - that would be the best way to introduce Rakesh Maiya to Kannada audiences. The TN Seetharam directed show had made Rakesh a household name. Yet, after a good stint on television, it is the big screen that’s caught his attention. This year, he was seen in Shubhamangala, and is now gearing up for another, Saddu Vicharane Nadeyuttide, directed by Bhaskar Ninasam.

“A career in showbiz has been a long-time aspiration, for which I did a lot of short films and found my way into television. I worked on a few serials as supporting actor, but it was only after Magalu Janaki that I well and truly found the path that I want to travel on. It gave me a good break and recognition. My first film was Shubhamangala, which released recently and now, Saddu Vicharane Nadeyuttide will be in theatres tomorrow. I have done a few films since then, all of which will come out in due course of time,” says Rakesh.

Rakesh was not the lead actor of Shubhamangala, a film that got him some good response, but didn’t work at the box office. Heading into the release of Saddu Vicharane Nadeyuttide, the actor says that he is acutely aware of just how difficult getting a film to theatres and then maintaining screens can be. This, he says, is also why he isn’t blindly signing up for every film coming his way. “Marketing a film is the biggest challenge today. At a time when even big-ticket movies struggle with occupancy, there is always the question as to why audiences should come to theatres to see a film with a newcomer. Every film team promotes their movies claiming it is good and when that isn’t the case, audiences feel cheated. So, the challenge lies in winning their trust again. Right now, a few films have set the wheels in motion for audiences to head back to theatres, but these have been either led by A-list heroes or backed by major production houses, who have mastered the art of publicity and have the right network to ensure maximum reach of their product. Smaller players don’t have that kind of network. In my opinion, what often happens is that we promote some average films saying that for ‘Kannada level’ this is the best. Now, what do we mean by ‘Kannada level’? Today, films must be measured at an international level and the effort must be to ensure that our movies reach a wider audience, instead of limiting ourselves. So, my approach in choosing films with good stories that have the potential to reach audiences. In these films, I want to be the character; I don’t want audiences to see Rakesh Maiya, they have to believe that I am that character. Although I would like to play lead roles, I am not hung up about that. I also want to ensure that I am not wasting the time or money of the audience that has come to see me,” explains the actor.

Rakesh Maiya
Rakesh Maiya

In the last couple of years, Rakesh has been a part of at least six films, including Love in the time of Covid with Shruti Prakash, which has been shot like the Malayalam movie CU Soon, with the entire narrative taking place on a laptop. “This is a rom-com, though. Then, there’s Tenant, which is also a film shot during the pandemic. I am also a part of two other as-yet-untitled films, details of which will be announced soon. Last year, there was a phase where I was doing films, but still wondering what next. Now, looking back, I realize that I wasn’t sitting idle. It is not easy in this industry to get work continuously; there is a lot of competition,” he adds.

Saddu Vicharane Nadeyuttide is a murder mystery in which Rakesh plays a common man. “The film is a cop story, with the main narrative following an investigation. There’s a love story also that transpires parallelly between my character and that of Pavana, who plays a police constable on probation. It is a story that unfolds in a small town, and touches upon issues of caste in the context of an inter-caste marriage. While we have explored some socially-relevant issues, it is not preachy and the film has been made as a commercial entertainer. I believe it is a thriller that will evoke curiosity among audiences and have them guessing the outcome right to the end,” Rakesh signs off.

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