Anantapur, Andhra Pradesh: It’s a traditional Indian cinema fight-in-the-desolate track scene. Against the background of dunes and depressions with a tiny sprinkling of scrub flowers, the hero rises from the burning sands of a barren wasteland to overcome the bad men to a pulp. Adding masses of warmth and dirt to that already bestowed by nature, he brings the movie to a happy end (besides the villains). Countless Indian movies have staged those scenes in some desolate desert of Rajasthan. Or even in the ravines of the Chambal Valley in Madhya Pradesh.
This arid desert scene (see video clip) used no locations from Rajasthan or the Chambal. It was shot deep inside the southern peninsula, in Andhra Pradesh’s Rayalaseema place. This patch of a few 1,000 acres in the Anantapur district – as soon as protected by millet cultivation – has become an increasing number of a desert over many years. That has been pushed using regularly paradoxical elements, creating the type of area that filmmakers ship out place scouts to look for.
In Dargah Honnur village, wherein the foremost landowners of this patch reside, it was tough to get everybody to accept as true that we had been now not movie place scouts. “Which movie is this for? When is it coming?” changed into both an express query and one on their minds. With a few, you may see a quick ebbing of hobby once they discovered we had been reporters.
The Telugu movie makers that made the place famous – Jayam Manade Raa (Victory is Ours) – shot the combat scenes between 1998 and 2000. As any diligent commercial filmmakers would, they tinkered with their ‘set’ to decorate the desert effect. “We needed to uproot our crop (for which they compensated us),” says Pujari Linganna, forty-five, whose own family owns the 34 acres where the combat changed into a shot. “We also removed a few plant life and small timber, so it might appear extra actual.” Deft camerawork and the intelligent use of filters did the relaxation.
If the makers of Jayam Manade Raa had been capturing a 20-years-after sequel these days, they might do much less. Time, tormented nature, and constant human intervention have affected all the wasteland upgrades they might request.
But it’s a curious desolate tract patch. Cultivation remains because there’s still groundwater very close to the surface. “We hit the water in this patch at simply 15 ft under,” says P. Honnureddy, Linganna’s son. In an awful lot of Anantapur, borewells won’t discover water earlier than 500-six hundred ft. In components of the district, they have got breached the 1,000-foot mark. Yet here is water gushing out of a 4-inch borewell as we communicate. That a lot of water, so close to the floor, in this warm, sandy patch?