From Arjun Reddy to Liger, Telugu superstar Vijay Deverakonda has charted a long and extraordinary journey to the top. The actor talks to HELLO! about stardom, the rise in the popularity of South Indian celebrities, what success means to him, and more...
HELLO!: Congratulations on winning ‘Breakthrough Superstar of the Year’ at the first HHOF - South! How do you feel?
Vijay Deverakonda: “Thank you! I hold the award feeling the love of millions like me from across India. I did a lot of ‘breaking through’ with them since I started as an actor in 2016. There’s a lot more ‘breaking through’ to do for me personally, and I’m also eager to be a part of other young dreamers’ breakthrough journeys.“
H!: Share some highlights of 2022.
VD: “The biggest eye-opener for me was the contrast between my internal fears and worries about having to promote my film across India, in regions I’ve never stepped into, in languages I’ve never spoken. But in every state, the intense love I received from the masses that gathered... I never dreamt of something like that. It left a lasting impact.”
H!: What drives you today?
VD: “Just living and trying to make the most of life.”
H!: What’s your benchmark for success?
VD: “The feeling of living up to your potential. That’s it.”
H!: What keeps you grounded despite all your success?
VD: “It’s normal. It takes no special effort. I was born, raised and live in a particular way. Nothing’s a big deal. We all live, do our thing and then move on.”
H!: How do you feel about the recognition South Indian personalities receive today?
VD: “It’s uniting in a way and a breakthrough in a way. It’s a positive change. But spotlight or not, we should contribute positively to ourselves and to those around us who depend on us.”
H!: Your personal sense of style is...
VD: “Whatever I feel like wearing at that moment. No rules. No definitions.”
H!: What are you most excited for in 2023?
VD: “I’m excited about everything! From waking up to working out. From my cold showers to reading my books. From spending time with all those I love, my friends and family and my rowdies, to travelling. From my movies Kushi and VD 12 to my new ventures, the Hyderabad Black Hawks volleyball team, my clothing line Rowdywear as well as AVD Cinemas and King of the Hill Entertainment. It’s a list of passions I own and want to contribute to. I’m sure there’s a lot more in store...“
H!: Whom do you turn to for comfort when stressed?
VD: “My father helps me clear my mind. My mother helps put me to sleep. And my friends are my go-to when I want to distract myself.”
H!: What are you most thankful for?
VD: “Everything! Everything’s a blessing. It’s up to us to make what we want of it.”