A trained classical singer, brand endorser for a cola giant and a mega son.In his two-year old film career in Tollywood, 20-something Ram Charan Tej has a difficult legacy to live up to. Setting himself as an independent entity from his megastar dad Chiranjeevi, is a tall order. For someone who’s always compared to his dad for everything (to the extent that he was nervous about his on-screen riding skills for his new film, since Chiranjeevi’s riding skills in Kondaveeti Donga and Kodama Simham were much appreciated) Ram Charan claims he’s just another “normal guy” who hero worships his iconic dad.
When Hyderabad Times met up with the young dreamboat at his Jubilee Hills residence, he sounded excited about his new film Magadheera, which is the talk of Tollytown but admitted to feeling unhappy that the big-ticket film was being labelled as Chiranjeevi’s last film.
“I don’t want the film to be his swan song,” says the actor, who is hopeful that he can convince his reluctant dad to do “one” more film at least.
Working on a big budget extravaganza which is being touted as the costliest venture to have been made in the Telugu film industry so far, Ram Charan says filmmaker Rajmouli was “waiting for four years with the script because the film demanded an actor who’s also a skilled horseman”.
Horse riding, admits the actor has been a childhood passion and he’s glad that it could be used for the role. Incidentally the actor didn’t use body doubles to perform risky stunts for the film.
Ram Charan also inspired director Bhaskar to think ‘differently’ and come up with a peppy love story. “It revolves around me, Genelia and one more character and will be shot in New York,” says the actor who’s learning to skydive for the role.
Unlike Bollywood, Telugu filmmakers are caught between romance and action films. Ram Charan feels otherwise. he says, “We are trying out new themes, but Bollywood seems to have fallen back with potboilers, using star names, glam quotient and wafer-thin plots.” He’s also put Praja Rajyam Party’s poor show in the recent elections behind him.
“We realised that the charisma of one person is not enough. We required equally capable 200-odd members to enable us to form the government.” Ram Charan who actively campaigned for his father, rules out “political aspirations” and says acting will remain his “first and last love.”
After a marathon 260-day schedule for his film, Ram Charan’s now eager to catch up with all that he’s missed. “I am getting back to my books and movies. I enjoyed watching the Hollywood
flick Hangover tremendously,” he says. In fact, he was so busy that Ram Charan had to forgo his holidays. But he’s making up for that with “a couple of days’ break” to rejuvenate himself.
Has he added some new friends to his list? “No. I believe in the adage that the more friends we have, the more our problems intensify. I cherish the small set of friends I have,” he chips in.
Is he wary of living up to people’s expectations? “Oh, I’ll live up to the huge expectations,” asserts Ram Charan before bidding us a warm goodbye.