Actor Kiara Advani made her Telugu film debut in Bharat Ane Nenu opposite with Mahesh Babu.
Actor Kiara Advani made her Telugu film debut in Bharat Ane Nenu opposite with Mahesh Babu.

Kiara, Nidhhi, Adah: Bollywood talent meets the best of South cinestars

Kiara Advani made her successful Telugu film debut opposite Mahesh Babu in Bharat Ane Nenu; names such as Kiara Advani, Nidhhi Agerwal and Adah Sharma will also soon be seen alongside superstars in their debut south Indian films.
Hindustan Times | By Monika Rawal Kukreja, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON MAY 21, 2018 06:22 PM IST

Telugu, Tamil, Kannada or Malayalam — film industries in south India have always been an attraction for Bollywood names looking to widen their fanbase. And the bonus is that one gets to work alongside some of the biggest cinestars.

Recently, actor Kiara Advani made her Telugu film debut in Bharat Ane Nenu opposite Mahesh Babu; the film broke several records. Next up, and hoping to be as successful are Adah Sharma, paired with Prabhudheva in Tamil film Charlie Chaplin 2; Niddhi Agerwal with Naga Chaitanya in Telugu film Savyasachi; and Shraddha Kapoor as Prabhas’s leading lady in tri-lingual film Saaho that’s simultaneously being made in Hindi.

READ | Kiara Advani is all praise for co-actor Mahesh Babu: He doesn’t make you feel that he is a super-duper star


Earlier, cinema lovers have seen successful pairings such as Kriti Sanon-Mahesh Babu, Sonakshi Sinha and Deepika Padukone with Rajinikanth, Preity Zinta and Katrina Kaif with Venkatesh, and Kangana Ranaut alongside Prabhas.

READ | Adah Sharma on co-star Prabhudheva: He’s quiet and doesn’t feel the need to be constantly speaking


Working with a big name is like a double-edged sword — it has its benefits, but there are responsibilities, too, say the Bollywood ladies. Calling Nagachaitanya “the perfect combination of a natural and an intelligent actor”, Nidhhi says, “It’s an advantage that many more people see you on screen, but you also have a responsibility to match up to their skill.”

Adah, who has worked with Puneeth Rajkumar and Allu Arjun in her Telugu films, says the stakes are higher with her Tamil film debut. “My films in the south were blockbusters, [so] people expect a lot from me in terms of entertainment and performance. Also, I’m going to be dancing alongside the legend Prabhudheva, so eyeballs are guaranteed.”

Sharing her experience of working with Mahesh Babu, an excited Kiara recalls, “He’s so grounded [as a] person and doesn’t make you feel he’s a super duper star. i remember how even when my close-up shots were being taken, he’d always stand there and give me my cues and help me say my lines in a certain way. I used to practice with him and he has been very supportive that way.”


Film industry experts say it’s a win-win situation. “Not only does your popularity increase, you also learn and grow as an artist while working with big names,” opines trade expert Atul Mohan.

Bollywood and movie expert Omar Qureshi sees it as a “convenient entry” into films via the south, as one gets a lead role as opposed to a cameo in Hindi films. “Some who find it tough to crack it here [in Bollywood] have scope to do more [down South] than just play debutante eye candy. Hence, the crossover is always going to be there.”

Interact with Monika Rawal Kukreja at Twitter/@monikarawal

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