tv & movies

‘Daali’ Dhananjaya: An OTT and a theatrical release is a treat

The actor, who made his mark with ‘Tagaru’ talks about his latest release, Rathnan Prapancha

Dhananjaya, who hit the big time with his role as the underworld don, Daali, in the Shivarajkumar-starrer in blockbuster Tagaru, plays the lead in Rathnan Prapancha, which dropped on Amazon Prime Video on October 23. He plays legendary actor Umashree’s son in this comedy directed by Rohit Padaki.

Dhananjaya worked on Ram Gopal Varma’s bilingual Bhairava Geetha (Kannada and Telugu) and is currently working in two Tamil films. His Kannada film, HeadBush, where he plays Jayaraj is written by Agni Sridhar and will be produced under his banner, Daali Productions.

The actor, acted in the short film Jayanagara 4th Block and had a recent theatrical release, Salaga. He talks to MetroPlus shedding light on his role in Rathnan Prapancha and more.

Edited excerpts

What is Rathnan Prapancha all about?

It is a story is about a middle-class insurance agent, Rathnakara, who has his own struggles. At one point he realises that he is adopted and takes off seeking his biological parents. He is a reserved person and during his journey he meets different people and they impact his life and perceptions. The film is a laugh riot that will take you on an emotional journey. The fun part is that I drew from real life experiences to play Rathnakara.

What is your view on the salty language?

That is how most Kanndigas (mothers or grandmothers) talk. I am sure many Kannadigas will have met a character like Umashree.

Why was the film released digitally considering theatres have opened?

The film was made keeping OTT in mind. I do have films that were released in theatres, Salaga, for instance. With Ranthnan Prapancha we wanted to reach out to a world wide audience. Cinemas are open and there is a huge influx of films happening there. Hence, our team felt a digital release would work better as we can reach out to people from every language and country. It will be a treat for actors to have their films released in a theatre and OTT. I am grateful that OTT has boomed, specially during the pandemic, as that gave us a platform to make and watch films while we were cooped up at home.

Your character’s name, ‘Daali’, from your debut film seem to be stuck with you for life. Does that bother you?

It is a huge compliment when people tag your name with that of a character you portray on screen. I feel honoured that people loved me as the don Daali. At the same time, I want to be known as an actor who can do any kind of a role and not be limited to one style. That is why I make it a point to choose films where I get to explore kinds of roles.

You have worked with Ram Gopal Varma. How different is the Telugu film industry from the Kannada film industry?

Working with him was a great experience. The team was brilliant. If you can get along with people and ideologies meet, then working together is a breeze. Workwise, there is not much difference when it comes to the two industries. The only thing I see is that they are very generous when they invest money in any film, while we sometimes tend to be cautious.

Rathnan Prapancha is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video

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