Stand Up Rahul, the upcoming Telugu film starring Raj Tarun and Varsha Bollamma in the lead roles, is a feel-good coming-of-age film, writer and director Santo Mohan Veeranki tells Silverscreen India, adding that dubbing has commenced on Wednesday.
“Filming is 90% complete and we are planning to resume shooting by the end of this month,” says Santo.
The film, he adds, revolves around the titular 25-year-old who never stands up for anything in his life. “Though his passion is to become a stand-up comedian, Rahul ends up joining a start-up company. Likewise, despite longing to get his separated parents to reunite and wanting to fall in love with a girl, he does nothing. So the story is about this guy who eventually learns to stand up for various things in his life.”
Santo reveals that Raj Tarun was actually 10th in the list he made of actors who could pull off the stand-up comic role. “I reached out to all of them, and Raj was the first person to get back. When I went to narrate the story to him, our wavelengths synced. He also watches stand-up comedy shows and likes coming-of-age films. He liked the story of Stand Up Rahul and immediately agreed to be part of the project.”
Varsha Bollamma plays the role of Shreya Rao, a Telugu girl brought up in Pune who has body-image concerns, the director tells us. The actor’s character poster was released on June 23.
Santo, who quit his job as an aerospace engineer in England before he came to Hyderabad to pursue filmmaking, says the film is primarily inspired by his own life.
“The dilemma between passion and profession is very common among youngsters and I too experienced it. I even tried my hand at stand-up comedy to overcome stage fright. Though I failed miserably, the experience was worthwhile. I developed the protagonist’s character based on all of this.”
He notes that another common experience among youngsters is how they develop cold feet when the marriage topic pops up. “This film touches upon such topics that youngsters can relate to,” Santo says, adding that the film’s story is completely fictional.
Santo began writing the script in 2019 in English and later roped in a Telugu writer for scripting the dialogues.
The film was shot in multiple schedules between December 2020 and April 2021. “Since Stand Up Rahul is a film from the perspective of a stand-up comic, we have chosen a happy and vibrant palette that will be visually appealing,” the director adds.