She’s elated and why shouldn’t she be? “Things are finally where they should be,” is how Lakshmi Manchu chooses to describe this amazing period in her career. The winner of the recently announced Nandi Awards for cinematic excellence, Lakshmi goes down in Tollywood history as the first actress to win an award for a negative role.
“Playing Irendri was brilliant and I am so happy that the state has decided to bestow me with this honour. Anaganaga O Dheerudu will always hold a special place in my heart and now even more so,” she tells us.
With her hands full of projects and a special pet project at that, we ask Lakshmi how Kadal happened. “I have always wanted to work with Mani Ratnam, you know, just walk across the frame if I could — that’s all I really wanted, that would have done, really. So, when I was offered a role in Kadal, I obviously jumped at the offer. I now feel like the chosen one! The shooting is now over and what an experience it was! I also got to work with Arjun Sarja in the film and that was a brilliant experience too — we go back a long way, we’ve known each other for a long time, but this film sees us work together for the first time,” enthuses Lakshmi.
And the role you play in Kadal? “Well, I can’t say much, but let’s just say it’s sea-related (laughs). We have finished shooting in Manappad and the film has also been wrapped up, I think. So you can expect a release any time early next year,” says the actor.
Not one to let go of so easily, we then conclude, asking Lakshmi about Gundello Godari. “Gundello Godari is a dream project too. I am producing and acting in the film and so I’ve been running around quite a bit. We’re just finishing the post production of the Tamil version, Maranthen Mannithen, and we hope for a January 2013 release. I will be playing the role of a village belle, something I haven’t tried before and the film is based on the Godavari floods of 1986,” concludes Lakshmi.