With late legendary actor-politician MGR’s centenary celebrations around the corner, P. Mani and Krishnakumar, (who have no filmy connection but are ardent fans of the former Chief Minister), are digitally restoring his 1971 blockbuster film Rickshawkaran as a tribute to their matinee idol and releasing it on a grand scale.
At a time when the life span of even a big star’s film is hardly a week, the re-release of the re-mastered digital version of MGR’s Aayirathil Oruvan a couple of years back completed a massive run of 175 days in the city breaking all records at the box-office. It was thespian Sivaji Ganesan’s epic historical drama Karnan, which was given a makeover with colour correction, enhanced sound quality, and DI, which when released in 2012, ran for 100 days, setting the ball rolling for similar initiatives.
Rickshawkaran also marked the introduction of actress Manjula as the lead heroine. The commercial mass entertainer directed by Krishnan Nair and produced by Sathya Movies, which catered to all types of audiences, also fetched the Best Actor award from the state for MGR. The songs by MS Viswanathan were the biggest asset for the film.
Right from my childhood, I am a zealous fan and sincere devotee of MGR I have grown up watching Thalaivar’s films. I have never missed FDFS of his movies. I hail from a business family and have no links in cinema. Out of love and affection towards MGR, I have ventured into this — the first being Rickshawkaran, which is very close to my heart,” Kovai-based Krishnakumar tells DC.
He adds, “As far as I am concerned, MGR is the only Superstar of Tamil cinema. Since Rickshawkaran is a mass movie, I am releasing it in 100 screens in Tamil Nadu and I am confident of its success.” The icing on the cake is that Krishnakumar is releasing the film’s trailer on August 21 at Devi Paradise in Chennai — the same venue where the film was released 47 years ago. Plans are on to release it in September....