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Film Making Is Like Starting Up Every Day

Learning how to present sto­ries is impor­tant — epics like the Rama­yana and the Mahabharata have lasted for thousands of years

Photo Credit : Himanshu Kumar


If you can’t let someone else do the stuff, do it yourself, but in the end it’s all about telling or communicating a story in the best possible manner.” Meet Rana Daggubati, whom the whole world may know as a versatile actor, but many may not know that he is also an augmented reality (AR) expert and a techie as well.

A distinct personality trait of his is that he puts a great deal of heart as well as personal touch in everything that he does. “Give me something and I will do it whole-heartedly. I get rest­less if I don’t do it,” he says. People admire him for his epic character of Bhallaldev in Bahubali, possibly the most successful Indian movie till date. People also admire him for VFX shots of movies like Arund­hati, Robot etc. In fact, he is admired for whatever he has done so far.

Daggubati made it to this year’s BW 40 under 40 for his contribution to the en­tertainment industry and also as a serial entrepreneur.

He won the Filmfare award for the Best Debutant for his role in Leader. Grand­son of legendary Telugu movie producer D. Ramanaidu, son of director producer Suresh Babu and nephew of superstar Venkatesh, Daggubati has show business in his DNA.

Significantly, he is also a serial investor who has funded many tech startups in the last decade and a half, be it in Kwaan India or Anthill Ventures. But the icing on the cake is his own company, which is one of the most successful in southern film industry for VFX, animation, and digital post-production services.

A Belly Full of Dreams was Daggubati’s first film as a producer un­der the aegis of Anthill Studio, an initiative of Suresh Productions and Anthill Ventures. Anthill Studio is mentored by D. Suresh Babu.  

Along with Prasad Vanga (CEO, Anthill Ventures), Daggubati has taken up Anthill Ventures as a challenge. Besides, he has given  initial support to some six startups. “Technology is not limited to experience of audiences but it makes them live forever”.

According to him, Bahubali has done for India what Star Wars once did for the US film industry. “The sheer scale of pro­duction for Bahubali has changed the way people look at Indian cinema. It has also helped to keep the memories alive for a longer period of time by opening pathways to the gaming industry,” he says.

 Daggubati’s investments are mostly in tech startups seeded by Anthill Studios, whose prospects have improved vastly since Bahubali and who now stand a bet­ter chance of turning in a profit. These include names like Comiflix, News Plus, Reco Sense, Rooter Woodcutter, etc.  

Which idea to back is the most critical decision an investor needs to make. Dag­gubati and his group do this by asking for applications and selecting the most prom­ising ideas among them.  

Everything has changed from what it was ten years ago —  changes in technology have changed the entire show. Being a tech driven entrepreneur it can be presumed that Daggu­bati’s venture will adapt to the changes and per­form better.

Learning how to pres­ent stories is important — epic stories like the Ramayan and the Ma­habharat have lasted for thousands of years. Ac­cording to Daggubati, it is important to learn how to present stories in a better and interest­ing manner.

Daggubati says the same thing applies to the startups as well. His message to startups is “to be creative in doing the stuff and to know how to present the stuff. Similarly, in the movie-making business everyone knows what they are doing but it still teaches you every day, so it’s like starting up every time.”

Tags assigned to this article:
magazine 29 september 2018 40 UNDER 40 Rana Daggubati