17 Telugu Directors Who Became Successful After Helming Short Films

17 Telugu Directors Who Became Successful After Helming Short Films

16 Jul 19 @ 3:01 PM | By Vamsee Ajjampudi

Helming a film is a dangerous & tiring task. One has to maintain control over every department and exercise immense patience to get the desired output. Many have joined this profession by working as assistant directors in their early life. But there are some who joined this bandwagon without any prior experience. These people, earned a name for themselves in a much different manner. These are the Telugu directors who started direction from short films. After becoming successful in that arena, they helmed feature films. Let's have a look at those who climbed the ladder in a smart way.

  1. KVR Mahendra

    His feature film debut has become the talk of the town as it has two actors from star families making their big-screen appearance for the first time with this film. Dorasani starring Anand Deverakonda and Shivatmika Rajasekhar received applause from a section of the informed audience for its natural setting and the way it portrayed the recent historic-past of Telangana and the Gadis of landlords. It has a love story between the daughter of the landlord and a youngster from the lower-rungs of the society is almost incidental. His intense and realistic style of filmmaking is no surprise considering his short film Nisheedhi which received great praise from the fellow filmmakers. 

    KVR Mahendra
  2. Santhossh Jagarlapudi

    Santhossh Jagarlapudi comes from the short film arena and he has made a name for himself there before entering Tollywood. He directed 7.30 AM - a short film featuring Getup Srinu and it clocked over 1.3 million views earning Santhossh, the much-deserved recognition. He bagged an opportunity to direct Sumanth's landmark 25th film titled Subrahmanyapuram, which is a mystery suspense thriller. Eesha Rebba plays the female lead in this film.

    Santosh Jagarlapudi
  3. Lakshman Karya

    Lakshman Karya who shot to fame with Happy Wedding helmed a short film before this, titled Good Night. Lakshman Karya made his debut in Tollywood with the Niharika Konidela starrer. The received good marks for coming up with a contemporary romantic film with natural emotions and depicting modern youth. Good Night is a psychological thriller with strong writing. 

    Lakshman Karya
  4. Nag Ashwin

    Off late, Nag Ashwin has been in the news for all the right reasons. This Mahanati director who made his feature film debut with Yevade Subrahmanyam. He scored not only a hit with that Nani starrer but also proved that he could think out of the box when needed. His latest venture Mahanati about the life and times of legendary South Indian actress Savitri is termed as a classic by the critics and the audience embraced the movie like never before. Nag Ashwin made few short films and ad films before his maiden directorial venture. Yaadon Ki Baraat went to the Cannes and brought recognition to the maker. 

  5. Prasanth Varma

    Prasanth Varma has earned a name in the film circles with his unique short films. One who has watched his short films would have expected something like Awe as his first film. Awe scores big in every department and Prasanth Varma has to be appreciated for bringing out the best from his dream. Being a debutant director, he does a fantastic job in keeping the viewers engaged and for the kind of climax he choose, he deserves a pat on his back. His short films The Silent Melody and Dialogue In The Dark have created a lot of expectations and he has lived up to them by delivering a special movie like Awe.

    Prasanth Varma
  6. Siva Nirvana

    Natural Star Nani was signed on by Siva Nirvana for his directorial debut. He directed a handful of short films. One of his short films is Love Algebra. The film revolves around two individuals, Venkat and Chaitra, who are acquainted to each other since their school days. Due to a tiff, both of them separate only to meet after 12 years. What happens next forms the film.

    Shiva Nirvana
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  8. Tharun Bhascker

    Tharun Bhascker is an artist as well as a certified Tabla player who has won over 85 awards for his artwork. The relationship with art and music is what propelled him into exploring the visual medium. His short film Anukokunda which is a love story won The 48 Hour Film Project in 2012. The movie has also won in the category of Best Actor Female and Best Musical Score. Tharun’s directorial feature film debut is Pelli Choopulu which is a romantic comedy entertainer.

    Tharun Bhascker
  9. Hussain Sha Kiran

    Hussain Sha Kiran made his directorial debut with Meeku Meere ​Maaku Meme. The movie provided ample comedy entertainment and received decent reviews. He previously directed quite a few short films of which some are I2, Love Again, Lovaholic and Shadow. Most of his short films sport both humorous & serious tones.

    Hussain Shah Kiran
  10. Balaji Mohan

    Love Failure is a feature film which was constructed from a Tamil short film. Regina Cassandra starred in the short film. Encouraged by the positive response, Balaji Mohan directed a full-length feature film with the same story. Although Love Failure struck a chord with the youth, it didn't get the expected response. Unfortunately, the short film, which is posted below, is in Tamil.​

  11. Krishna Chaitanya

    Krishna Chaitanya directed Rowdy Fellow which had Nara Rohith as its lead actor. He has also directed the short film Impress which revolves around various characters who are troubled by several problems. How they overcome their problems forms the crux of the short film.​

    Krishna Chaitanya (Lyricist)
  12. Merlapaka Gandhi

    Merlapaka Murali is a noted Telugu novelist. His son Merlapaka Gandhi, whose real name is Che Guevera, was a short filmmaker who directed some acclaimed short films. His hilarious short film Karmara Devuda won the Best Director Award at a film festival. He later went to direct the funny Vekatadri Express. His next Express Raja' was also well-received. His directorials are expected to be funny and different for he finds new ways to make them different.

    Merlapaka Gandhi
  13. Sujeeth

    Sujeeth is a youngster who directed 38 short films. At the age of 24, he grabbed the feature film Run Raja Run which had Sharwanand in the lead role. The young director helmed the film so expertly that audiences loved the film for it had a tinge of freshness. The movie is about a young man's struggle to rewrite his father's tainted past. His short films are imbued with freshness and that is what sets them apart, Tokkalo Love story is one among them. ​

  14. Karthik Ghatamaneni

    Karthik Ghatamaneni has directed Surya Vs. Surya which tasted success. But before his feature films stint, he directed 35 short films. One of his short films, Infinity, had Harshavardhan Rane as the lead actor. The film is about a dejected guy who has lost a lot in his life. He decides to take his life. The way the short film has been narrated is quite gripping.​

    Karthik Ghattamaneni
  15. Pavan Sadineni

    Pavan Sadineni directed a number of short films. They have been viewed by thousands of netizens. His short film Interview is quite good. Some of his other popular short films include Loser, Love Formula 31 & Why Doesn't My Wife Like Me?. He later directed the feature film Prema Ishq Kaadhal which became a hit.

    Pavan Sadineni
  16. Rahul Sankrityan

    Rahul Sankrityan directed The End, a horror film. The film had Yuva Chandra as the lead actor. Yuva Chandra was also the lead actor in some of his short films. Some of his popular short films are Chitra I Love You & Who Killed Me.​

    Rahul Sankrityan
  17. Tanikella Bharani

    Tanikella directed the critically acclaimed Mithunam. Before that, he directed the short film Sira (ink) which runs for about half-hour. Since it is shorter than 40 minutes of runtime, it qualifies as a short film. The film which doesn't have many dialogues is about the struggle of a passionate writer. Tanikella Bharani starred & directed this message-oriented film.​

    Tanikella Bharani
  18. Virinchi Varma

    He achieved fame after directing feature film Uyyala Jampala. He started his career with short films like all the others in this list. One of his short films is Ninnati Vennela which revolves around two ex-lovers who meet after a long time. The film was viewed by thousands of netizens. After getting to know about the simple but different story of Uyyala Jampala, Annapurna Studios decided to produce it.

    Virinchi Varma