S Krishna, Sudeep and Swapna
Director S Krishna with Kiccha Sudeep and his wife-producer Swapna Krishna.PR Handout

After Hebbuli, S Krishna has reunited with Kiccha Sudeep again. They have collaborated for Pailwaan. Their latest film is much bigger than their previous film as it is releasing not just in Kannada, but in Telugu, Hindi and Tamil languages.

As the countdown for the release has started, S Krishna spoke to International Business Times, India, about the movie in length. Excerpts from the interview:

Your journey started as a cinematographer. You accidentally turned director with Gajakesari and now into production. I would say your growth is every technician's dream. Your comments?

It is all by god's grace. I never dreamt of becoming a filmmaker. When I entered the film industry, cinematographers from Karnataka used to struggle to find work here. My wish was to be part of good movies. After working in a few movies, that include Ranga SSLC, I got a big break with Mungaaru Male and since then there has been no looking back. Gradually, I was thinking about moving to the direction and my dream became a reality with Gajakesari. So, I did not plan anything here and everything has just happened. But I have always given my best to everything that I do.

Did you write Pailwaan keeping Sudeep in mind?

Yes. Sudeep sir had never done a sports film before and never took a toll on his body to this extent. I felt it would be a challenging and interesting role for him. I knew that the content is tailor-made for him, knowing his capabilities in bringing life to his roles.

How did you convince Sudeep to do a sports-drama for which he has to work hard on his physique?

He agreed because of the trust that he has on me. He has seen me from the days of Ranga SSLC in which I worked as a cinematographer. Sudeep sir was little hesitant initially, but once he made up his mind, he has given 200 percent to the project.

You have roped in Suniel Shetty for an important role in Pailwaan. How did it all happen?

It was Sudeep sir's idea to cast him (Suniel Shetty) in the role. After he spoke with Sunil anna, I met him and narrated the story, but I did not expect him to accept the offer. Fortunately, he liked the content and agreed to be part of Pailwan. It was a proud moment for us as it marks his debut in South Indian films. We are lucky to have him in the film and he is the perfect choice for the role.

In a press meet, I recall Sudeep mentioning about mood swings due to the changes in his lifestyle as part of the preparation for Pailwaan. Was it difficult to handle him? 

He had a strict diet regime for the role in Pailwaan. He would suffer from giddiness if he did not have food on time. Having worked with him in a few movies, I understand what he went through. Even if he is upset with something, he would be back to normal in 10 minutes.

Pailwaan Muhurat
Sudeep with director S Krishna and producer Swapna Krishna, while Kiccha's wife gets ready to tap the clap for the first scene.PR Handout

You take more than two years to complete a film. Which aspect of the movie-making consume more time for you?

It depends on the script. Writing is not my strong point. I take time to prepare my story, but I am quite fast in other aspects of filmmaking. For a movie like Pailwan, the hero needs time for physical transformation. I took six-seven months to complete the script.

Visuals in your movies have always been a treat for the audience. Do you give special attention to it as you hail from cinematography background?

From the art department to costume, we work and execute plans as a team. Having a cinematography background is definitely an advantage, but I would like to give credit to my art director, cinematographer and other technicians for making my movies look beautiful.

In Pailwaan, you seem to be raising the standards of the visuals to the next level by using a lot of VFX. Tell us about it.

Today, we need to tell a story at a different level. Everybody is watching everything. Nobody gives grace marks and watch Kannada movies. Quality is of utmost importance. So, we need to raise the standard and in Pailwan we have effectively used VFX effects. Close to 90 minutes of run-time have special effects (Shah Rukh Khan's Red Chillies have done VFX for boxing scenes) which we have used to enhance the quality.

You are releasing the movie in five languages. Was there a plan to release in multiple languages from the day one or an afterthought?

We did not start the movie with the plans of releasing in multiple languages and it was decided later. People, who were coming to the sets to meet us, used to suggest us to dub the film in Telugu and Hindi languages. As the sports-based story has universal appeal and Sudeep sir playing the lead, we planned to release it in other languages as well.

What next?
Right now, my only focus is Pailwaan and not decided on my next, yet.

Pailwaan Wrap Up
S Krishna's Pailwaan crew with Kiccha Sudeep.PR Handout