If Baahubali 2 faced the wrath of pro-Kannada groups, which threatened to stop its release in Karnataka as Kannadigas were annoyed with actor Sathyaraj for his controversial remarks during Cauvery protests many years ago, it is now the turn of the Superstar's highly anticipated flick Kaala to face a bigger storm.
While Pro-Kannada groups have been threatening to stop the movie from being screened and talks were on in Bangalore to convince them, the Karnataka film chamber of commerce has come out with an emphatic statement that Kaala would not be allowed to be screened in that state and that the decision has been taken in the interest of Karnataka.
The super hit film, Baahubali -The Conclusion, had a smooth release in Karnataka after Sathyaraj tendered an apology. But Kaala has become a bigger target in Karnataka over never ending political issues. Pro-Kannada organisations,
along with Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce, have decided not to allow the release of the film because of Rajini's stand on the Cauvery issue and his comments during recent protests in Chennai. The Kabali star, who has forayed into active politics, had been heard demanding that the Centre form the Cauvery management board.
KFCC has been under pressure from several Kannada groups which gave written requests asking distributors and exhibitors to refrain from releasing Kaala. With only a few days left for the film's release on June 7, it seems the stand has really hardened and the movie is facing a Karnataka boycott.
One may recall that Kuselan, a 2008 film of Rajini had a troubled passage when the actor's comments on the same Cauvery issue didn't go down well with Kannadigas. After he expressed regret for his remarks, the movie got released without a protest then. But the scenario is totally different now as the Baasha actor is into politics. It is doubtful if he would be in a position to tender an apology as it would have political overtones.
The fringe group Rakshana Vedike has said that even if Rajini apologises, they would not allow his movie to be released in the state. They have also threatened theatres with dire consequences if they release Kaala.
There are also reports suggesting that the protestors warned yet another actor turned politician Kamal Haasan that his movies would also face the same predicament if he continues to express opinions against Karnataka in the Cauvery issue.
Dhanush is producing Kaala under Wunderbar Films while Pa Ranjith has directed it. Meanwhile, Rajini has announced that he has cancelled his Hyderabad and Mumbai trips (to promote Kaala) as a mark of respect to those who perished during the Sterlite police firing on May 22.
In the meantime, a certain post allegedly posted by the piracy website Tamilrockers is giving nightmares to Tamil filmmakers as it states, ‘We will release the Kaala full movie on the first day before the first show’. The clip is making its rounds on social media platforms. It is unclear from where the twitter handle originated and if it is indeed from the official domain of the said piracy website....