Mukunda

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Mukunda
Mukunda poster.jpg
Film poster
Directed by Srikanth Addala
Produced by Tagore Madu
Nallamalapu Srinivas
Written by Srikanth Addala
Starring Varun Tej
Pooja Hegde
Prakash Raj
Rao Ramesh
Ali
Music by Mickey J Meyer
Cinematography Manikandan D.F. Tech
Edited by Marthand K. Venkatesh
Production
company
Leo Productions
Release dates
  • 24 December 2014 (2014-12-24)
Running time
142 minutes[1]
Country India
Language Telugu
Box office INR11.5 crore (US$1.8 million)[2]

Mukunda (English: Krishna) is a 2014 Telugu film written & directed by Srikanth Addala. The film was produced by Tagore Madhu and Nallamalapu Srinivas (Bujji) under the banner Leo Productions. It features Varun Tej and Pooja Hegde in the lead roles, the former making his debut in Telugu cinema. Rao Ramesh, Prakash Raj and Nassar were seen in other key roles. Manikandan D.F. Tech was the film's director of photography. Mickey J Meyer composed the film's soundtrack and background score. Marthand K. Venkatesh edited the film.

Production began on 27 February 2014 at Hyderabad. Principal photography commenced on 24 March 2014 at Cochin and was completed on 16 December 2014 at Hyderabad. The film was initially titled as Gollabhama. Apart from Hyderabad, the film was predominantly shot in Andhra Pradesh at places like Rajahmundry, Bhimavaram, Amalapuram etc. while parts of thew film were shot at Cochin and Alleppey in Kerala and at Kanyakumari, Pollachi in Tamil Nadu. The film released worldwide on 24 December 2014 to decent reviews from critics.

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

Development[edit]

C. Aswini Dutt approached Puri Jagannadh to prepare a script and direct the debut film of Naga Babu's son Varun Tej. The project failed to materialize and subsequently, Puri Jagannadh produced and directed that script which was titled Heart Attack starring Nithin and Adah Sharma.[3] Srikanth Addala was confirmed to direct the film in late January 2014. The film was announced to be shot in the locales of Kerala and East Godavari.[4] The film was formally launched at Hyderabad on 27 February 2014.[5] The film was confirmed to be produced by Nallamalapu Srinivas and Tagore Madhu jointly on Leo Productions banner. Mickey J. Meyer was announced as the film's music director while V. Manikandan was announced as the Director of photography.[6] The film's opening ceremony was aired live on MAA TV which was the first time ever for a Telugu film.[7] Pooja Hegde confirmed the film's title as Gollabhama in early June 2014.[8] The film's title was changed in early August 2014 with Mukunda Murari being the possible title.[9] However on Janmashtami, the makers renamed the film as Mukunda.[10]

Casting[edit]

"I was blown away by Srikanth Addala's narration and he has great clarity about what he wants. That sort of makes our job easy on the sets. I'm glad that I have got a chance to play a different character compared to my role in my debut film and my role is one of the key elements in the film."

 —Pooja Hegde, regarding her character in the film.[11]

Prior to this film, Varun Tej underwent training in acting skills under the supervision of Satyanand who trained Varun's uncle Pawan Kalyan. Either of Akshara Haasan and Parineeti Chopra were rumored as the film's female lead.[12] Pooja Hegde was finalized as the film's female lead later. Prakash Raj, Brahmanandam, Rao Ramesh and Nassar were confirmed to appear in crucial roles during the film's launch.[6] Varun Tej was reported to be seen as a volleyball player in the film in late March 2014.[13] Allu Arjun was reported to make a cameo appearance in the film in mid June 2014.[14] The film's unit confirmed those reports as rumors later.[15] Sekhar Kammula was reported to make a cameo appearance in the film.[16][17]

Filming[edit]

Principal photography was supposed to start from 15 March 2014 in Kerala.[18] The filming began on 24 March 2014 at Cochin.[19] The film was reported to be shot in the locales of Alleppey.[20] Varun Tej suffered a fracture during the filming of an action sequence at Alleppey and shooting resumed after his recovery.[21] On its completion, the next schedule began in Konaseema. The film was shot in places like Rajahmundry, Bhimavaram, Samalkota and adjoining areas for four weeks. The film was also shot in areas like Pollachi, Kanyakumari and Yanam in early June 2014. The schedule ended almost after 33 days on 4 July and the team returned to Hyderabad.[22][23] A new schedule began at Hyderabad on 29 July on whose completion, the filming continued in Amalapuram from 5 August.[24]

By then, the film entered dubbing phase.[25] Varun Tej began dubbing for his role in late August 2014 and by then, filming neared completion except for few songs.[26] At Amalapuram, a crucial scene featuring Varun Tej, Rao Ramesh and Pooja Hegde was shot where Varun Tej was seen taking part in a municipal election campaign visiting several houses in the locality to create awareness among the people.[27] After shooting the film there for 10 days, a song was shot on the lead pair in Switzerland.[28] The schedule ended on 16 September 2014.[29] In mid November 2014, Srikanth Addala said that the remaining part of the film would be shot in Hyderabad and a big set is being planned for a song.[30] The last song was shot in a special set erected at Nanakramguda in mid December 2014.[31] Pooja Hegde confirmed that the filming came to an end on 16 December 2014.[11]

Music[edit]

Mukunda
Special Edition Disc cover
Soundtrack album to Mukunda by Mickey J Meyer
Released 3 December 2014
Recorded 2014
Genre Feature film soundtrack
Length 26:06
Language Telugu
Label Aditya Music
Producer Mickey J Meyer
Mickey J Meyer chronology
Chakkiligintha
(2014)
Mukunda
(2014)
TBA

Mickey J Meyer was selected to compose the film's soundtrack and background music continuing his association with Srikanth Addala after Kotha Bangaru Lokam (2008) and Seethamma Vakitlo Sirimalle Chettu (2012). The soundtrack features 6 songs and a Theme music whose lyrics were penned by Sirivennela Sitaramasastri.[32] Aditya Music acquired the soundtrack rights in mid August 2014 for an undisclosed high price.[33]

The soundtrack was expected to be launched in September 2014 initially.[34] The release was postponed to November 2014.[35] The release date was later finalized as 3 December 2014.[36] Shilpakala Vedika was announced as the venue on 2 December and also, a song teaser was unveiled as a part of promotion.[37] Chiranjeevi attended the audio launch along with Allu Arjun as the chief guests and unveiled the soundtrack.[38]

Reviewing the soundtrack, Karthik of Milliblog wrote "Chaala baagundi, with its briliant vocal plus guitar interplay, is the soundtrack’s best, with Haricharan proving his value again! Mickey on top of his game, again!".[39] The Times of India stated that the soundtrack has some peppy and melodious tunes, calling "Dumdaredum" and "Chala Bagundi" as the best songs of the album.[40] IndiaGlitz wrote "Mickey J Meyer's imprint is write over the album. It's a mix of melody and youthfulness. Sirivennela writes all the songs to a profound effect. Getting choicest of singers on board, Mickey delivers a music lover's album."[41] Avad M of 123telugu selected "Daredumdadum", "Nandalaala" and "Chaala Bagundi" as the picks of the album and wrote "Mickey J Meyer once again proves that he is a class apart and provides a chart topping romantic album which is quite soothing and melodious".[42]

Tracklist
No. Title Artist(s) Length
1. "Chesededo"   Rahul Nambiar, Revanth 04:24
2. "Daredumdadum"   Mickey J Meyer, Sai Shivani 03:55
3. "Chaala Bagundi"   Haricharan 04:45
4. "Gopikamma"   K. S. Chithra 04:21
5. "Arere Chandrakala"   Karthik, Sai Shivani 03:26
6. "Nandalaala"   Shweta Pandit 04:09
7. "Mukunda Theme"   Instrumental 01:09
Total length:
26:06

Release[edit]

The film's overseas theatrical distribution rights were acquired by Asian Movies and CineGalaxy, Inc.[43] The film was initially scheduled for a Sankranthi release i.e. in mid January 2015.[44] However, the film's release was advanced to 25 December 2014 as a Christmas release to avoid clash with Gopala Gopala.[45] The film was awarded an 'U/A' certificate by Central Board of Film Certification on 19 December 2014 and the release date was locked as 24 December 2014.[46][47] The film released in 75 theaters across United States and premiere shows were held on 23 December 2014.[48] The film however clashed with Chinnadana Nee Kosam which released in equal number of theaters across the world.[49]

Marketing[edit]

The film's first look posters featuring Varun Tej were unveiled on 21 August 2014.[50] The first look teaser was unveiled by Varun Tej on 2 September 2014.[51] A video teaser of the song Chesededo featuring Varun Tej was unveiled a month later on 2 December 2014.[52] A new trailer was unveiled on 6 December 2014.[53]

Reception[edit]

The film received decent reviews from critics who praised the performances, dialogues, songs and background score besides criticizing the screenplay, editing and slow pace of the film according to International Business Times India.[54] Y. Sunitha Chowdary of The Hindu wrote "Since most of the story centres on the debate and dialogue, rather than an expected logical ending, it is likely that many regular cine goers will go home dissatisfied. But for those who appreciate truth, facts of life and intelligent conversations, this is the film smartly interspersed with action and village politics for today’s youth".[55]

Hemanth Kumar of The Times of India rated the film 3 out of 5 and wrote "Every once in a while there comes a film, which stands apart from the rest in terms of the subject it explores and the tone of narrative, although the nuances might not be blatant. You know it's different because it tries to break free from the template of an action comedy, a genre that has become synonymous with Telugu cinema these days. Mukunda is exactly that kind of film and much more. It's a film which is so aware of the milieu that it's exploring that you get sucked into the narrative to have a ringside look at the complex characters that inhabit the canvas the story unfolds on."[56] Suresh Kavirayani of Deccan Chronicle rated the film 3 out of 5 and stated "Finally it’s not a regular commercial film, a typical Srikanth Addala kind of film, without the double meaning dialogues and vulgarity".[57]

In contrast, IndiaGlitz wrote "Sans loudness and crassness, Mukunda has a scent of SVSC. But it lacks a good story and barring less than four scenes, it hardly has anything to keep up our interest" and rated the film 2.75 out of 5.[58]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Mukunda’s run time locked". 123telugu.com. December 23, 2014. Retrieved December 23, 2014. 
  2. ^ 'Mukunda', 'Chinnadana Nee Kosam' First Weekend Collection at Box Office - IBTimes Dated 29 December 2014 Retrieved 29 December 2014
  3. ^ "Puri was supposed to launch Varun Tej". The Times of India. May 30, 2014. Retrieved November 17, 2014. 
  4. ^ "Srikanth Addala to direct Varun Tej’s debut film". The Times of India. January 28, 2014. Retrieved November 17, 2014. 
  5. ^ "Varun Tej's Debut Film Launched: Pawan Kalyan, Chiranjeevi, Allu Arjun Attend". International Business Times India. February 27, 2014. Retrieved August 17, 2014. 
  6. ^ a b "Varun Tej Launched In Grandeur". IndiaGlitz. February 27, 2014. Retrieved November 17, 2014. 
  7. ^ "Varun Tej Creating History; His Film Launch To Be Aired Live". Oneindia Entertainment. February 26, 2014. Retrieved November 17, 2014. 
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  11. ^ a b "Mukunda will be a fabulous film, says Pooja Hegde". The Times of India. December 16, 2014. Retrieved December 17, 2014. 
  12. ^ "Akshara Haasan or Parineeti for Varun Tej's film". IndiaGlitz. 9 April 2013. Retrieved November 17, 2014. 
  13. ^ "Varun Tej to play a volleyball player?". The Times of India. March 25, 2014. Retrieved November 17, 2014. 
  14. ^ "Allu Arjun cameo in Varun Tej’s debut film?". The Times of India. June 18, 2014. Retrieved November 17, 2014. 
  15. ^ "Allu Arjun's cameo in 'Gollabhama' is just a rumour". IndiaGlitz. June 20, 2014. Retrieved November 17, 2014. 
  16. ^ "Sekhar Kammula's cameo in 'Mukunda'". IndiaGlitz. December 17, 2014. Retrieved December 17, 2014. 
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  27. ^ "Varun Tej takes part in an election campaign in Mukunda". The Times of India. August 31, 2014. Retrieved November 30, 2014. 
  28. ^ "Varun Tej, Pooja Hegde groove in Switzerland for Mukunda". The Times of India. September 7, 2014. Retrieved November 30, 2014. 
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  33. ^ "Aditya Music bags Varun Tej’s debut film audio rights". The Times of India. August 14, 2014. Retrieved November 30, 2014. 
  34. ^ "Mukunda's audio to be launched in September". The Times of India. August 21, 2014. Retrieved November 30, 2014. 
  35. ^ "Varun Tej's Mukunda audio to release in Nov". The Times of India. October 10, 2014. Retrieved November 30, 2014. 
  36. ^ "Mukunda's audio to be unveiled on Dec 3". The Times of India. November 29, 2014. Retrieved November 30, 2014. 
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  53. ^ "New Trailer: Varun Tej's Mukunda". The Times of India. December 6, 2014. Retrieved December 7, 2014. 
  54. ^ "'Mukunda' Movie Review Roundup: Decent Debut for Varun Tej". International Business Times India. December 24, 2014. Retrieved December 24, 2014. 
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