Jai Lava Kusa
Jai Lava Kusa is a 2017 Indian Telugu-language action film written and directed by K.S. Ravindra (Bobby), cinematography by Chota K. Naidu and produced by Jr. NTR's brother Nandamuri Kalyan Ram under his banner N. T. R. Arts. The movie features Jr. NTR in a triple role as the male lead, while Raashi Khanna and Nivetha Thomas playing the female leads. The film also features Posani Krishna Murali, Pradeep Rawat, Pavitra Lokesh, Nassar, Hamsa Nandini, Sai Kumar in the supporting roles and Ronit Roy who making his entry in Tollywood as the antagonist. The soundtrack and background music is composed by Devi Sri Prasad.
|Jai Lava Kusa|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||K.S. Ravindra (Bobby)|
|Produced by||Nandamuri Kalyan Ram|
|Written by||K. S. Ravindra|
|Music by||Devi Sri Prasad|
|Cinematography||Chota K. Naidu|
|Edited by||Kotagiri Venkateswara Rao|
|Distributed by||Sri Venkateswara Creations(Nizam)|
|Box office||est. ₹175 crores |
The film collected 175 crores worldwide and was successful at the box office. It was screened in Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival in Category of "Best of Asia" in South Korea.
Three identical triplets Jai, Lava, and Kusa are being taken care of by their maternal uncle (Posani Krishna Murali). They have different personalities and seek a humble life by stage drama performances. Lava and Kusa excel in acting, whereas Jai is sidelined by his uncle due to his stammering disability. Jai, though a member of the family, is generally set to do household chores and is treated as the second class citizen. To take revenge on them for damaging his reputation, an instigated and a humiliated Jai later sets the drama stage on fire and flees.
After 20 years, all three brothers (played by N. T. Rama Rao Jr.) have become adults. They have separated, they are scattered and seek their own lives in different places. Kusa, an expert mugger with a happy-go-lucky attitude who does anything with money, mugs a huge amount of money to fly to the United States, but the plan eventually backfires as the money becomes worthless due to demonetization. He happens to meet his twin brother Lava, a bank manager who adheres to his principles and runs an ethical life. Lava is an example for over goodness and gets entangled in many problems with his life because of it, with the fear of losing his job and his love, Priya (Raashi Khanna), his marriage broker whom he had fallen in love when his marriage was fixed and he realized about his love towards her when she did not talk, meet or see him. Kusa hatches a plan to go to the bank and impersonate Lava, while Lava tries to make Priya, whose marriage was fixed, fall for him. He says that she too loves him but does not accept because of her family, and she never said that she does not love him and only says to go. Priya soon accepts his love. However, Kusa cheats Lava and runs away with the money.
Priya disappears, and her father (Shiju) files a kidnap case on Lava because her younger sister claims that she saw Lava kidnap Priya and run away. Priya's father, sister, and a police officer arrive at Lava's house. Lava swears that he did not kidnap Priya. He then receives a call from a colleague, V. A. Rajini (Hamsa Nandini), at his bank. She says that there is footage of him stealing money in the bank's locker room. Lava, realizing that Kusa had cheated him, asks the police officer to find Kusa. Kusa is already captured by the police officer and is tied up inside of a truck, where Lava and the police officer go. Lava confronts Kusa and asks him about the whereabouts of Priya. Kusa says that he did not kidnap Priya but did take the money. Lava and Kusa venture that if both of them are alive, Jai may also be. The police officer (Saikumar Pudipeddi) reveals his identity as Kaakha, who is Jai's mentor, and says that Jai's name is not Jai but Ravan. He pretends to arrest them so that he can bring Lava and Kusa to Ravan (Jai) to kill them.
Kaakha narrates the story about Jai after the fire accident. He says that Ravan (Jai) actually started the fire on purpose and then fled to a dangerous town in which Kaakha met Jai and raised him as his own under the name Ravan. Ravan (Jai) was trying to gain a seat in politics, but his temper made him an enemy to the public. He has brought them to his house to use Lava and his kindness to woo the people into voting for Ravan (Jai). The police officer also tells that Ravan learned the weaknesses of both Lava and Kusa and stole Priya and the money, respectively. After knowing the truth about Ravan (Jai), Lava and Kusa are taken to Ravan (Jai)'s house. Ravan (Jai) shows Lava and Kusa Priya and the money, respectively. Ravan (Jai) tells Lava his role and Kusa that he has to woo Simran (Nivetha Thomas), a woman that tried to kill Ravan. Ravan (Jai) also says that they have to change their outfits like him and follow his mentor Kaakha. Lava succeeds by gaining the love of the public while impersonating Ravan (Jai). Kusa meets Simran, who is trying to take revenge on Ravan for her brother's (Harish Uthaman) death.
Kusa makes a deal with Simran that she has to act like Ravan's lover so that Kusa can get his money back and Simran can take her revenge on Ravan (Jai). Kusa tells the truth to Lava and Priya about his deal with Simran. Ravan (Jai) overhears the plan and angrily tries to kill Lava and Kusa. Lava begs Ravan (Jai) to leave Kusa. Just then, he receives a call in which he is told that he is the frontrunner for winning the election. Lava and Kusa hatch a plan to bring their brother back with them. They do a play in which emotional breakdowns occur in trying to convince Ravan (Jai) to be their brother again. Ravan (Jai), overcome with emotion, storms out. Later, it is known that Ravan is secretly trying to kill his brothers. The next day, Lava and Kusa drive a car that has a bomb attached to it. After they leave, Ravan (Jai) reveals his plan to kill Lava and Kusa. The uncle begs Ravan (Jai) to save Lava and Kusa, but Ravan (Jai) does not listen. Then, the uncle asks Kaakha to tell Ravan (Jai) to not kill Lava and Kusa. Kaakha comes to know that he told Kusa this, thinking that he was Ravan (Jai). Kusa tells the plan to Lava while they are driving, and they understand Ravan (Jai) and decide to die.
Sarkar (Ronit Roy), who is seeking to take revenge on Ravan (Jai) for his win in the election, stops the car. Sarkar thinks that there are only twins and says that whoever reveals their identity as Ravan (Jai) will be killed and the other will be spared. Both Lava and Kusa pretend to be Ravan (Jai), and in frustration, Sarkar shoots Lava. As Kusa is screaming Lava's name after he is shot, Sarkar thinks that Kusa is actually Ravan if the person that he just shot is Lava. A fight ensues to try and kill them both. Ravan (Jai) comes and save Lava and Kusa by killing Sarkar and his goons, though he is hurt repeatedly and dies after the fight.
The film ends with a emotional and sad ending, while Kaakha, Lava and Kusa are crying when Jai (Ravan) dies.
- N. T. Rama Rao Jr. in a triple role as Raavan Maharaj (Jai), Lava and Kusa
- Raashi Khanna as Priya
- Nivetha Thomas as Simran
- Ronit Roy as Sarkar
- Posani Krishna Murali as Jai, Lava and Kusa's uncle
- Pavitra Lokesh as Jai, Lava & Kusa's mother
- Saikumar Pudipeddi as Kaakha (Jai's sidekick and guardian)
- Pradeep Rawat as Yadagiri
- Nassar as Dhanunjay Sashtri
- Hamsa Nandini as V. A. Rajini, Lava's co-employee in Needs Bank
- Nanditha Raj as Sravani
- Priyadarshi Pullikonda as Obulesh 'Obs'
- Harish Uthaman as Jai's henchman and Simran's brother
- Shiju as Priya's father
- Praveen as Kusa's friend
- Jaya Prakash Reddy as Sravani's father
- Brahmaji as Rambabu, bank assistant manager
- Prabhas Sreenu as Bank Recovery Officer
- Abhimanyu Singh
- Sharath Lohitashwa (cameo appearance)
After the success of Janatha Garage, Jr. NTR was supposed to do a film under the direction of writer Vakkantham Vamsi which would mark his debut as a director. The project was announced on May 20, 2016. In September 2016, sources stated that the Vakkantham Vamsi project was shelved as the Nandamuri brothers were not satisfied with the script. Later, news emerged that Anil Ravipudi of Pataas and Supreme fame was keen to direct Jr. NTR with some sources stating that he had earlier discussed a story in which NTR was to play a blind person which didn’t work out, but the actor seemed keen to work with Anil and asked him to come up with another script, for which he immediately came up with a new idea. However, in the later stages, K. S. Ravindra of Power fame joined the race to direct NTR and the star hero was to choose between Anil Ravipudi and Ravindra. Finally in December 2016, Nandamuri Kalyan Ram took to Twitter to announce that K. S. Ravindra would be directing Jr. NTR's 27th movie in the lead role. Kalyan Ram stated that he was delighted to produce his brother Tarak’s 27th film on their home banner N. T. R. Arts and that this big budget project will have the very best technical standards and production values. The production house announced that the movie will begin shooting after Sankranthi 2017.
After K. S. Ravindra was signed to direct NTR, the team announced that C. K. Muraleedharan of 3 Idiots and PK fame was roped in to work for the movie. Raashi Khanna was signed to play the lead actress opposite Jr. NTR and a source revealed that she would portray a strong role in the movie. Few days later, the production house announced that the Hollywood prosthetics and Legacy Effects expert Vance Hartwell who earlier worked in movies like Lord of the Rings trilogy, Enthiran, Iron Man, Shutter Island etc. was signed to take care of NTR's look in the movie. It was said that Jr. NTR would play three characters in the film, and Hartwell had been roped in to specially take care of his look for one role and was flown down from Los Angeles to take the measurement for a facial mask.  Devi Sri Prasad was roped in to score the music.
In April, Nivetha Thomas of Gentleman fame was signed to play the second female lead. Nanditha Raj was added to the cast to play a special cameo while Hamsa Nandini was signed to play a character in the movie. Priyadarshi Pullikonda confirmed his inclusion in the movie and stated that he shot for three days. Initially Duniya Vijay,Kannada actor was given an offer to play as antagonist but he was banned by Kannada Film Industry due to some reasons,then the makers had to approach bollywood actor Ronit Roy, who has aced negative roles in films like Kaabil and Boss,. Later he was roped into the film marking his Telugu Debut. Anil Paduri of "Advitha Creative Studios" supervised the VFX for the movie. A. S. Prakash is the art director for the movie.
The film was formally launched in Hyderabad on 10 February 2017, at the new office of N. T. R. Arts. The ceremony was attended by Nandamuri Harikrishna, Nandamuri Ramakrishna, V.V. Vinayak, Dil Raju, Shirish, B. V. S. N. Prasad, Yalamanchili Ravi, Kilaru Sitish, S. Radha Krishna, Suryadevara Naga Vamsi and others. The honorary clap was given by Jr. NTR while the camera was switched on by Nandamuri Harikrishna . Director V.V. Vinayak directed the first shot, which was picturised on the photos of deities. Principal photography began in February 2017 in Hyderabad while Jr. NTR joined the sets in the mid of March. A wedding scene between the lead pair NTR and Raashi Khanna was picturized in the surrounding area of Chilkur. Actor Priyadarshi also joined this shoot. Nandamuri Harikrishna, father of Jr. NTR and Kalyan Ram, visited the shooting spot in latter half of March and a picture of him on the sets revealed that one of the characters played by Jr. NTR is a bank manager named "N. Lava Kumar". The team spent ₹2 crore (US$290,000) to erect a massive set at Ramoji Film City where a major portion of filming took place. In the mid of May, DOP C. K. Muraleedharan was replaced by Chota K. Naidu after Muraleedharan walked out of the project after shooting for two months due to ego problems. The movie unit stated that there was absolutely no truth in reports that he chose to leave the project due to ego clash with the director. Bollywood actor Ronit Roy joined the shoot in the mid of June and some action sequences were shot in a stone quarry in Hyderabad.
In the end of June, a couple of leaked stills and a teaser from the movie surfaced online and went viral on the internet. The production house was upset over the matter and requested the fans not to share them on the social media. Some of the culprits were later identified and arrested. It was later revealed that the teaser was not the finalized one and it was just a rough cut. A man named Ganesh was arrested on the charges of leaking the teaser online. Producer Kalyan Ram approached the Cyber crime department and lodged a complaint over this issue.
After completing a major schedule at the Ramoji Film City, the team headed to Pune for shooting a couple of songs and scenes. The shooting was expected to take place for 20 days.
|Jai Lava Kusa|
|Soundtrack album by|
|Released||Sep 3, 2017|
|Producer||Devi Sri Prasad|
|Devi Sri Prasad chronology|
|2.||"Tring Tring"||Ramajogayya Sastry||Jaspreet Jasz, Ranina Reddy||4:23|
|5.||"Swing Zara"||Ramajogayya Sastry||Neha Bhasin, Devi Sri Prasad||4:22|
|6.||"Andamaina Lokam"||Chandrabose||Vishwaprasad M Ganagi||3:17|
|Track list (Hindi Dubbed)|
|2.||"Asura Asura Raavanasura"||01:20|
The movie had its worldwide theatrical release on 21 September 2017.
On the occasion of Sri Rama Navami, the movie team announced the title of the movie as Jai Lava Kusa. A logo motion poster was released featuring a music score by Devi Sri Prasad. The makers released the first look posters of the movie on the eve of NTR's birthday. The posters showed NTR sporting a twirled moustache and donning a black shirt and pierced ears. The name of the character present on the posters was revealed as "Jai".
The movie unit announced that they would release three teasers, one for each titular character portrayed by the protagonist. The first teaser introducing "Jai" character which earlier appeared in the first look was released on July 6 at 5:22 PM. Jr. NTR took to the social networking site Twitter to release the teaser. This teaser showed "Jai" as a man with a stutter who idolizes Ravana, the demon king. The 2nd teaser featuring the 2nd character, Lava Kumar was released on 24 August 2017 on the eve of Ganesh Chaturthi, that was followed by a poster of the 3rd character Kusa on the next day.
The movie opened to mixed response from critics with audience word of mouth being largely average but went on to collect huge at the box office. The critic at Greatandhra gave 2.75 stars out of 5, stating the movie is all NTR's show. Jeevi of idlebrain, stated the movie as Triple treat to fans and gave 3 stars out of 5.
Jai Lava Kusa opened to one of the best openings for a telugu movie. The movie grossed ₹47 crores on first day, making it the fourth biggest opening of Telugu cinema worldwide. In Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, the movie grossed ₹32 crores on its first day, making it the second biggest opening of Telugu cinema just behind mighty Baahubali 2: The Conclusion.
On the sixth day of its release, Jai Lava Kusa crossed the ₹100 crores gross mark, making it the third fastest in Telugu cinema history next only to the Baahubali series. The movie collected more than ₹62 crore share and ₹110 crore gross in its first week, making it the fourth biggest grossing opening week in Telugu cinema history.
At the end of its theatrical run, Jai Lava Kusa grossed between ₹130.90–175. This was the sixth movie of Jr. NTR which entered the 'all time top 5 grossing' list at the time of its release after Aadi, Simhadri, Yamadonga, Brindavanam and Janatha Garage, creating a record for Jr. NTR who became the first hero to enter this elite list six times, more than any of his contemporaries.
Despite opening to mixed response and heavy competition from other films, Jr. NTR's star power and great acting show saved the movie and made it a successful venture at the box office. This marked the fourth consecutive hit of Jr. NTR after Temper, Nannaku Prematho and Janatha Garage.
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