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Director Hanu Raghavapudi: The war in Sita Ramam is invisible, it’s psychological

The period romance, largely set in the 60s, headlined by Dulquer Salmaan and Mrunal Thakur, releases on August 5

Director Hanu Raghavapudi: The war in Sita Ramam is invisible, it’s psychological
Hanu Raghavapudi

Last Updated: 04.29 PM, Jul 24, 2022


While Sita Ramam gears up for a release across multiple languages on August 5, the film’s director Hanu Raghavapudi also completes 10 years in the industry. The filmmaker is content about having made only four films in the decade and thanks Sai Korrapati, the producer of his debut release Andaala Rakshasi for trusting his capabilities and building a strong foundation to his career.


“I don’t have any regrets about my choices. Once I was sure of my craft, I knew I could make a career in any industry. I never get affected by success or failure and wasn’t worried about not getting work. Even if a film flops, audiences don’t disregard the director’s worth and only treat it as a one-off mistake. That’s the reason why people still look forward to my films,” Hanu says.

Hanu Raghavapudi
Hanu Raghavapudi

Sita Ramam, which releases on August 5, was a story born of out his frequent visits to Koti to buy second hand books. “I had come across a letter that was never opened. A mother had written to her son. There wasn’t anything substantial in it. However, what if the letter had something significant to say and it didn’t reach the intended person? It can be life-altering too. The story is purely fictional.”

“The protagonist Ram is an orphan, a solider based out of Kashmir. A special programme on him is broadcast on radio, after which he receives many letters. One such letter changes his life forever. What was that letter about? How does Ram’s life take a drastic turn? You’ll have to watch the film to know more. This is a larger-than-life story. I and the producer Swapna Dutt felt Dulquer would be apt for it,” he shares.

Wasn’t it challenging to pull off a letter-era romance? “Letters have a special place in my heart. Communication is a major issue in any love story. The reason why love stories were more memorable in the past was because people weren’t so connected or didn’t communicate daily. Letters have a different emotion. We all are missing that magic now. I hope I’ve captured it well on-screen.”

The film is largely set in the 1960s, but progresses across two timelines. While justifying his reason behind the film’s caption ‘Yuddhamtho raasina prema katha’, Hanu states, “The war here is invisible. The story of Ramayana isn’t about how Ram won over Ravana. It’s about the many internal, psychological conflicts he faced through the journey. You’ll notice that invisible war in Sita Ramam too”

Hanu Raghavapudi
Hanu Raghavapudi

The biggest challenge he faced with Sita Ramam was the weather. “Nature was the major roadblock. We shot amidst difficult conditions in Kashmir. It was very tough. The rest of the film was a breeze though. You can make good films when you have a producer trusting you at every step. Vyjayanthi Movies completely believed in my story, right from the beginning.”

He’s thrilled about the feedback Sita Ramam has been receiving for its music. “The composer Vishal Chandrasekhar and I are great friends and find it easy to work with each other. We share a similar taste in music and I don’t have to spoonfeed him much. Music is an asset to this film. It’ll age beautifully.” The duo had earlier collaborated for Padi Padi Leche Manasu, Krishnagadi Veera Prema Gaadha.

What can one expect from Rashmika Mandanna’s role in Sita Ramam? “She plays a very crucial role that changes the trajectory of the story. The film deals with many incidents in her journey. All characters, Sumanth, Bhumika, Priyadarshi, regardless of big or small, drive the plot forward. “ He has two projects coming up - an action film in Hindi with Sunny Deol and Nawazuddin besides Amazon Prime Video’s web series.

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