Balakrishna to play Telangana warrior Gona Ganna Reddy

Be it Abhimanyu in Dana Veera Soora Karna, Jahangir in Akbar Salim Anarkali,Krishnadevaraya in Aditya 369 and the more recent Gautamiputra Satakarni — Balakrishna has always tasted success when playing larger-than-life historical/ mythological figures on the big screen. Looks like another such character has caught Balayya’s fancy now — it’s that of Gona Ganna Reddy, the celebrated 13th century warrior who was a close aide of Kakatiya queen, Rani Rudrama Devi.

“Balayya has been wanting to make a film on Gona Ganna Reddy for a while now. As there isn’t much literature available on him in public domain, things never quite materialised. But Balakrishna’s fascination for the character has remained intact. This time the actor is determined to see it through,” says a source close to the actor.

It was in 2016, that talk about Balakrishna playing Gona Ganna Reddy first broke. The prospect of the sitting MLA of AP’s Hindupur playing a Telangana icon became a talking point in both film and political circles of the two Telugu states. While it didn’t materialise then, the actor isn’t leaving anything to chance this time around.

“Balayya has roped in a team of writers to do research and flesh out a story worth telling on the silver screen. Once he wraps up shooting of his next film with Boyapati, come January or February, an official announcement will be made,” says the source, adding, “Based on how the story pans out, a suitable director will be selected to helm the project.”

Whenever the announcement is made, most Telugu movie lovers will have only one question to ask: Can Balayya beat Allu Arjun’s firebrand portrayal of Gona Ganna Reddy in Anushka’s Rudhramadevi? Only time will tell.