Adivi Sesh opens up on how he broke the ice with Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan’s parents

Hyderabad, May 10 (IANS) The trailer release of ‘Major’ has finally given a sneak peak into the magnificent and heart-warming spectacle set to unfold on screens from June 3.

Adivi Sesh essays the role of the 26/11 martyr, Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan, but the riveting performances of veteran actors Prakash Raj and Revathi as the braveheart’s parents, K Unnikrishnan and Dhanalakshmi, stand out. The trailer opens with gripping vignettes of the angst of the Major’s parents, his father’s words ringing in the ears of the audience.

The inputs of the martyred Major’s parents and their insights on their only child’s persona significantly helped the makers in crafting the movie, but getting to them was not easy.

Speaking on the occasion of the trailer launch, lead actor Sesh acknowledged Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan’s parents’ contribution to the making of the movie. “Our motivation is Major Sandeep. The movie’s first audiences are his parents. They don’t have another son, they don’t have another daughter. Their main hope is to keep Major Sandeep’s memories alive forever. They wanted to keep his memory alive,” he recalled emotionally.

While Sesh recalled that he had around seven meetings with Major Sandeep’s parents, initially they stonewalled all his attempts at reaching out to them.

“The first time we called uncle, he hung up on us. The second time we called, he hung up on us. Then we had a friend of ours, a girl, call up. So it started with us hoping that they would not hang up the phone on us.”

Soon, there was a thaw and the aged couple opened up about their apprehensions, Sesh recalls. “Then we went to meet them the first time. We started talking to them. We just had to give them the assurance that we are genuine. They told us how a British television crew came and spent two days in their house, researching Sandeep’s life, and talking to them about their feelings. And then it was all packaged into a 30-second capsule. So we had to convince them that we are genuine.”

And finally, Sesh’s resemblance to the Major also played a part in getting the family’s support.

“And it really helped that my face looks like Major Sandeep’s face. So as we were leaving after our third meeting, aunty said, Mera beta lag raha hai. So that’s how, at least from aunty’s side, we had the green signal.”

On screen, too, actors Prakash Rai and Revathi have come out with powerful performances, as Major Sandeep’s parents. Speaking about them, director Sashi Kiran Tikka said, “When I met Major Sandeep’s parents, I got the same feeling when I saw Prakash Raj sir and Revathi madam on the monitor. I had tears in my eyes when watching them enact the same feelings. I think that’s what is energy transformation. What they transformed into me, I transformed to the actors and they will transform the same energy to the audience.”

‘Major’, based on the life of Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan, hero of the Mumbai terror attacks, is all set for theatrical release on June 3.

The bilingual film was shot in both Hindi and Telugu, and will release in Malayalam as well. Produced by Sony Pictures International Productions in association with Mahesh Babu’s GMB Entertainment and A+S Movies, Major is directed by Sashi Kiran Tikka, and stars Adivi Sesh, Sobhita Dhulipala, Saiee Manjrekar, Revathi, Prakash Raj, Anish Kuruvilla and Murali Sharma.