The story of a man who started his journey as a set boy to later turn into an art director becomes worthy of being told on the celluloid, and an inspiration to many. But for Gandhi Nadikudikar, it’s his reality and real-life experience.
Born in Mahabubnagar in a middle class family, he struggled hard to succeed in life. After his father’s death, the 18-year-old Gandhi moved to Hyderabad. He had no clue about the city but he managed to land at Annapurna Studios. Today, Gandhi stands as one of the successful art directors in the Telugu film industry.
With not much idea about the workings of the film industry, Gandhi stood at Annapurna Studios for nearly two days for a job. Later, he was appointed as a set boy and developed an understanding of how the industry works. Since then, he took one step at a time towards becoming an art director.
“Art director’s job is not really an easy one; it takes a lot of patience to deal with everything and everyone,” says Gandhi. “An art director has to struggle to find a location, has to imagine the scene before the movie starts, take the help of the artist to draw the art before it gets on to the sets. Generally, we select the places one month or 15 days before the shoot,” he adds.
He further shares how it is also “difficult to find some locations according to the requirements in the movie and arrange sets according to the director’s vision and idea”.
Gandhi worked with Sekhar Khammula for Anand, Godavari, and Happy Days as a set assistant and art assistant for Life Is Beautiful. He also worked for some of the big movies like Gopala Gopala, Nachchavule, Karthikeya, Manamantha, Bhagamathie, and Mahanubavudu.
“I have worked as an art director for seven films till date. I got this opportunity because of Nizar Shafi and Ramesh Varma and I feel very thankful to them,” says Gandhi, who is currently working for Bangaru Bullodu, George Reddy and Virataparvam.