Prabhas found his way back to the city of dreams once again, this time as a successful dreamer. Here to promote his latest film Radhe Shyam, he found the time to dip into some nostalgia over his last few visits to the city as a youngster. Lipika Varma spoke to the actor on his time spent in Mumbai, the promotions for Radhe Shyam, and what’s going on in his personal life.
How do you find the Mumbai after all these years?
A few of my friends and I used to come to Mumbai for fun. We had some friends here. That time, nobody recognised me, so we used to go to the beach and have street foods. Mumbai has a lot of energy. The first time, when I was traveling in the train, I met my cousin. We were surprised to see people here not walking but running! In Hyderabad, we are lazy. I have never seen anything like this in Hyderabad. Thereafter, I have come to Mumbai many times. I was here for Adipurush and was staying in Goregaon to finish our shoot.
After Baahubali’s huge success, we heard you received marriage proposals from more than 5000 females?
That’s also like being in a confusion space because if you get too many proposals, you are in a problem.Thus, getting confused, you do nothing.
Do you plan on getting married?
Yes, I’m sure that I will get married but when, I don’t know. My mother wants me to get married. We have had this discussion at home and I have promised her that I will think of marriage after the release of Baahubali.
Will it be an arranged marriage, love marriage or will it be a love-cum-arranged?
If it happens, it should be a love marriage. Marriage will happen, that’s for sure.
What is your take on love and destiny in Radhe Shyam? How was it working with Rajamouli?
It’s mostly about love but also about science, love, destiny and fate. Vikramaditya, who can see the future, is very strong. He might fall have a problem emotionally with love. That’s the story. The climax is concluded in an interesting way. Personally I believe in hard work but after Baahubali I felt like oh! destiny does exist. It’s too big to understand fate or destiny. For me, I believed in hard work and Rajamouli also believes in the same. As a friend, I admire and respect him and follow him.
You are a global star. What does success and stardom mean to you now?
The effect of Baahubali was huge. From Tollywood to Bollywood; it’s not easy to absorb. It took a lot of time to sink in. I used to enjoy audiences loving the film especially from all over the world. Now, I‘m in a happy position.
As a pan-India artist, what are the things you look for in the script that attracts you?
The toughest part is choosing the script. In Bollywood, you have different genres. There is commercial, love story, family stories and realistic films. This we have in Tamil /Telugu as well. It’s very difficult to find a script which can be loved all over the country. Presently, only 3 such films have happened – KGF, Baahubali and Pushpa brought in huge success and were loved by the audiences. We are indeed going to make a lot of pan-Indian films but it’s a herculean task to be able to do that in the beginning. A movie may do well in Mumbai but in Telugu, the same would not be the fate of that particular film. We are all in a confused state right now. We will take 4 to 5 years to understand what clicks as we are used to doing the same thing for all movies. All of us, Bollywood, Tamil and Telugu industries are in the learning process now.
In Radhe Shyam you play Shyam. Previously, you played Lord Rama in Adipurush. Very few actors get such opportunities. Which one do you relate to in real life?
It’s better that I relate to Vikramaditya. The idea was to do a parallel universe but he [Director Raut] said no. I was more comfortable with the parallel universe. I can’t make any mistakes now so I called Om [Raut] and told him I am really getting stressed. It’s not just a film but a very important projection. I feel like working for Adipurush, I have never gotten so frightened in any film, not even Baahubali.
What measures have been implemented so that the film does not face any controversy?
I don’t know about that, we will know when the story is there. I think there is no controversy. We did it genuinely, with heart and soul.
What are your ambitions apart from acting?
Right now, I am doing films and enjoying it so let me act [laughs].