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    The director on his next projects and learning to live up to the expectations of fans

    It’s SS Rajamoulia��s Amar Chithra Katha moment. For a man who grew up reading the comics, he couldna��t have asked for a better New Year gifta��his Baahubali is all set to launch as comics, animations, novels and games.A� a�?Ia��ve been a big fan since childhood and I have wanted to do a big war film for a very long time. Mahabharata is a favourite. So I put all my dreams into Baahubali,a�? he tells me.

    Power storytellingBahubali_03 (1)
    Baahubali: The Beginning grossed over Rs.A�500 crores at the box office and he is in the process of wrapping up the second and final part, Baahubali: The Conclusion.A� He is aware of the expectations a�?I think it is an advantage a�� we already have a good story in hand. What we have given in the first part is the milder version, so I can say the best is yet to come. During the making, all I am worried about is transporting what is on paper to the screen,a�? he says. Rajamouli is all about the compelling story. a�?I am not here to educate or bombard you with social messages.a�?

    Romantic interlude
    As a filmmaker, he enjoys the writing the most. a�?Then I am just conceiving it and not worrying over the execution,a�? he explains. While the social media buzzed with speculation over Kattappa killing Baahubali in the film, Rajamouli admits that he did not quite foresee the supposed din over the Tamannah-Baahubali romantic scene. a�?That is one of the most beautiful poetic sequences I have ever done in my life. I am proud of it and I dona��t care about pseudo-intellectuals commenting, who think otherwise.a�?
    He equates filmmaking to preparing for a war a�� with generals and well-trained foot soldiers who understand your battle plans clearly.A� As long as it is not just about box-office returns and awards, filmmaking, says Rajamouli, will be a gratifying process. And yes, he still has a million stories of great kings he is dying to tella��from Rana Pratap, Sivaji and Raja Raja Cholan to Ashoka and Akbar.
    Baahubali: The Conclusion is scheduled to release in January 2017.

    Discarding capes
    The epic saga of the Baahubali multiverse is turning into a graphic novel series. Theya��ve roped in Graphic India a�� a Bengaluru-based character entertainment company a�� to expand on the world-building. a�?Our plot will revolve around the backstory of young princes, Amarendra Bahubali and Bhallala Deva, as they learn about the art of war, culture and court-politics,a�? shares CEO Sharad Devarajan, adding that he hopes to branch out to create games, animation mini-series and mobile apps, centered around the franchise.

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