With two days to go for the release of "Dasara", actor Nani on Monday said he is more nervous for the premiere of his latest movie than his film debut 12 years ago.
In order to grow, it is important for artists to nurture "love for cinema" and not take audiences for granted, said the "Jersey" star.
"I have a feeling that I'm debuting here. The most exciting feeling is when you don't take things for granted. You are always ready to explore new things. I still have butterflies in my stomach. It's two days to go for 'Dasara' and I hadn't felt this nervous when my first film released," Nani, who made his debut with 2011's Telugu film "Ala Modalaindi", told reporters here.
"Love for cinema is the most important thing for you to grow as an actor, for you to do better cinema, (be) better human being. Things work out sometimes, sometimes they don't. You can't take audiences for granted, if you do that, they'll show you the reality in the next film," he added.
"Dasara", directed by debutant Srikanth Odela, is set in a village situated in Singareni Coal Mines in Peddapalli district of Telangana. The film will have a pan-India release on Friday in languages such as Telugu, Tamil, Malayalam, Kannada and Hindi.
Audience is not a separate group, said the 39-year-old actor, who believes filmmakers only need to focus on doing good work.
"We (artistes) need to understand that we ourselves are the audience. Audience is not a separate group. If I put my heart in (something) and do something awesome for myself, people will love it because we are also the audience.
"If you make a good film, box office returns will automatically follow. In the case of the last few blockbusters, the first part picked up slowly. When it got your love, the second part received 10 times the love. The idea is to win hearts first, box office collections will follow," Nani said.
The Hyderabad-born actor, also known for hit Telugu films such as "Eega" and "Shyam Singha Roy", described "Dasara" as the perfect marriage of big-screen experience and emotions.
"You expect to whistle when you watch a massy film... It's a different type of massy film. This will be the first mass film that will touch your heart, which will be heartwarming. A combination you'll never get to see," he said.
"Dasara" will face off with Ajay Devgn-starrer "Bholaa" and Nani said he hopes the Hindi film also does well.
"It is not a clash with 'Bholaa'. We all love Ajay Devgn sir and I am eager to watch 'Bholaa'. So, go and watch the morning show of 'Bholaa' and catch the matinee show of 'Dasara'. If you're tired, go and catch the evening show of 'Dasara'," he added.
The actor also addressed the 36 cuts to "Dasara" advised by the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).
He said out of the 36 cuts, 24 cuts were in fact muting a Telugu word, a catchphrase used by his character Dharani, which the board feared may sound like a cussword up north.
"The Telangana word 'bainchhat' means to challenge someone and because it sounds like a cussword for the north, the censor board was worried that some people may have an issue with it. We understood and said 'Let's mute it'," Nani said.
The actor also talked about how shooting for the upcoming film was "no fun". To create the backdrop of coal mines, black powder dust was sprinkled on set every day, which also raised some health concerns for the cast and crew.
"Many people in the team had issues. Even, I had chest congestion. For two-three months, I couldn't sleep. Now when we see the final product, it was all worth it," he added.
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