Visakhapatnam: With the drug enforcement authorities knocking at the doors of famous film personalities, some seniors planning to move out of Hyderabad and make films in Visakhapatnam, at least temporarily.
Due to the ongoing investigation and questioning of film personalities related to drug abuse and smuggling, a tense situation has been created in Hyderabad, which was being shown glaringly in the media.
After the bifurcation of the state, several producers mooted the idea of making films in Visakhapatnam, which has picturesque locations all around the city and in agency villages like Araku Valley and Lambasinghi. It is also believed that films made in Vizag seldom flopped.
Even Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu appealed to the producers to make movies in Visakhapatnam and hinted at giving subsidies.
Daggubati Suresh, who owns Ramanaidu Studios on the Beach Road, last year told this correspondent that they have been making films in the studio at regular intervals but more films needed to be produced to lure the technical staff and junior artists.
On the request of film artistes and producers, the Chief Minister allocated 15 acres of land atop Thotlakonda for Filmnagar Club, which the producers said would enable the actors as well as producers from Hyderabad, Odisha and Bengal to meet to explore joint ventures.
But Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhara Rao is keen on retaining the Telugu industry in Hyderabad under any circumstances and recently said there would be no arrests of film personalities on charges of drug abuse.
“Hyderabad is choked and there are drugs, mafia making lives of film personalities miserable and tense. Though opportunities are galore, it is high time we moved to Visakhapatnam,’’ said Sunil Kumar, a junior artiste.
Citing advantages of Visakhapatnam, another junior artiste, said there are training schools run by Satyanand and film producer Geethakrishna, which are churning out artistes every year.
On average, 10 to 12 films are produced every year in Visakhapatnam and if the number goes up to 50, there are chances, artists and technicians would move out of Hyderabad and try their luck in Visakhapatnam.
But Rajahmundry MP and actor Murali Mohan and creative filmmaker Geethakrishna ruled out shifting out of Hyderabad. “If they move out of Hyderabad, the drugs will chase them to Visakhapatnam. Shifting for mere drug abuse is irrational thought.
Concrete plans have to be made and enough infrastructure needed to be developed for establishing in Vizag,’’ Geethakrishna said.
Actor Chiranjeevi is planning to build a studio in Bhimili for which he had acquired over 100 acres. Along with him, some more actors and producers also purchased lands on the Beach Road, perhaps hoping in future the industry would settle down here.
Story credit : the hans india