With his new release "Nishabda 2" opening to a good response, Roopesh Shetty, the lad from Tulunadu is making waves across Karnataka. The star, who is a singer, anchor and actor, based in Mangaluru spoke to Vedhanth of Karnataka Today about his future plans.
How did you enter the glamour world?
I was always interested in the entertainment industry. I joined a popular local channel in Mangaluru as an anchor where I anchored some of the popular reality shows. Due to this, I got offers to anchor many shows worldwide. I also joined a popular radio station in Mangaluru as radio jockey at that time. There was no looking back after that.
How did films happen?
I was offered a small role in Tulu film "Dibanna", after which I was offered a lead role in another Tulu film "Ice Cream" and in a Kannada film "Danger Zone". I was hosting a dance reality show few years back. Devraj Kumar was also present during the shoot. He was impressed with my hosting skills and he thought I was perfect for the lead role in his debut directorial. He asked me to give an audition after which I was selected.
How did you bag "Nishabda 2"?
Devaraj Kumar decided to cast me again in his next film "Nishbada 2", which is a thriller. He felt that I could do justice to the lead role. And when I read the script, I was also impressed with my character. I decided to do the film without any second thoughts.
Were you apprehensive about working in a sequel, which first had the legendary actor Vishnuvardhan as the lead?
I am a huge fan of Dr Vishnuvardhan. I have been in awe of his work and popularity. When I was offered this role, I could not say no. In fact, the film is a tribute to him. Even though he is not alive, I feel his blessings have helped us through the film.
How did fans of Vishnuvardhan respond to your film?
They loved the film and especially a particular scene where Vishnuvardhan comes on screen, and gets greeted by claps and whistles. I also had a visit in my hotel room from a hard-core Vishnu fan. All these moments will be cherished forever.
Any plans of making "Nishabda" into a series?
As we have got good response for the second part, we have plans to do a third part. Everything else depends on the director Devaraj.
Dogs played an important role in "Nishabda 2". How are you with dogs in real life?
To be honest, I never loved dogs. However, my perception of dogs changed with this film. We had two dogs Remo and Tapsee in the film, which I became very friendly with. Shooting with dogs is difficult and fun at the same time. We have to adjust to them. Sometimes, we had to take almost 40 retakes to get a shot right with them.
Can you please tell us more about "Ammer Polisa"?
This film is my biggest ever in Tulu. This is my third film in Coastalwood as the lead and hero. Sooraj Shetty, who is undoubtedly the number one director in Coastalwood is directing this film. It is also my first full-fledged commercial Tulu film, which has many great artists - around 150. It was great fun working on this film.
As you are an established star in Kannada, do you think it will help your Tulu films earn more at box office?
It may or may not help. I am not sure. The taste of people varies in different regions. "Ammer Polisa" is a purely commercial film made for Tuluvas. I hope it also connects with non-Tulu audience. I would love this film to be released in other parts of Karnataka too.
Any plans of working in the Malayalam film industry?
I am basically from Kasargod. Therefore, I know the language and I also follow their films. I have been offered a pivotal role in one of them but I will officially announce it when I sign it.
What are your future projects?
As of now, I am working on "Golmaal Brothers", which also has Srujan Lokesh and Chikanna as leads. Apart from this, I am going through scripts and will make an announcement soon.