A striking fact about 'Sarkaru Vaari Paata' is that it is directed by a medium-range filmmaker who will graduate to the next level - star director - only if the film becomes a hit this Summer. Mahesh Babu has reposed full faith in Parasuram Petla. And this is not the first time he has let a medium-range director wield the megaphone after 'Okkadu' catapulted him to stardom in 2003.
Let's analyze Mahesh's previous hits and misses with medium-range directors (after 'Okkadu', as he was not considered a star hero before that):
'Nijam': Director Teja had previously worked with new heroes. It is true that Mahesh gave the nod before 'Okkadu' was released, but technically speaking, 'Nijam' came out after 'Okkadu'. The vigilante drama, filled with superficial mother-son sentiment, turned out to be a major embarrassment in Mahesh's career.
'Athadu': Trivikram Srinivas had made a small film with Tarun and Shriya Saran in the form of 'Nuvvu Nenu'. 'Athadu' was his first star-hero movie. Nobody needs to mention what a special film it still is.
'SVSC': This was a two-hero movie that should have made Srikanth Addala a star director. But it didn't. One can say that Mahesh's gamble threw up mixed results in the case of this film.
'Sarileru Neekevvaru': Anil Ravipudi did 'F2' that had a star hero (Venkatesh). But it was not a full-fledged big-scale movie. Mahesh's bets worked in the case of this film.
On balance, it can be said that Mahesh's tryst with medium-range directors has been a good one, barring the tragic failure of 'Nijam'.
In fact, Mahesh's failure rate is high with directors whom he has repeated (read Srinu Vaitla's 'Aagadu', Gunasekhar's 'Sainikudu', Srikanth Addala's 'Brahmotsavam' and Trivikram's 'Khaleja'). His failure rate is 100% with non-Tollywood directors (SJ Suryah's 'Naani' and AR Murugadoss's 'SPYder' in the post-'Okkadu' phase).