Two years ago, Chennai was witness to a spectacular Pongal, with both Ajith and Vijay movies releasing on the same day. It turned out to be an intense competition between both the heroes’ fans to see who bettered the other in terms of celebrations. Even last year, Vikram’s admirers went berserk and created a huge opening for I.
Though four films — Kathakali, Tharai Thappatai, Gethu and Rajini Murugan are slated for release this Pongal, movie enthusiasts are a little disappointed as no Rajinikanth, Kamal Haasan, Ajith, Vijay, Suriya or Vikram movies are releasing. “The first thing that comes to my mind during this occasion is only ‘Pokkiri Pongal’. I always watch back-to-back shows of Ilayathapathy anna’s movies when they release on this day. This time, I’m extremely disappointed as it has been two years since I saw him on screen during this festival. I’ll have low-key celebrations this year,” says Sabari Nathan, an aspiring director and hardcore Vijay fan. For the Theri star, the harvest festival is in fact a special occasion, as some of his biggest hits including Pokkiri and Nanban released on this occasion.
Actor Shantnu Bhagyaraj, who is himself a big fan of Vijay, has some words to console the fans. “I accept that Pongal has always been a lucky outing for Vijay anna. But as a fan, I won’t say that I’m very disappointed, as for me, the release of his movie, regardless of its actual day, is itself like Diwali or Pongal. So, fans, don’t be worried. Gear up for the release of Theri!” he exclaims.
An equally disappointed Ajith fan, Gopinath N, had his say — “Though it’s usually Thala Diwali rather than Thala Pongal for us, whenever a big festival like this arrives, as an Ajith fan, I always want to see him in trailers, advertisements and promos on TV, which will actually give me a reason to celebrate. This year, I’m planning to watch Mankatha with my friends at a screening, which we’ll do at home.”
But, industry experts assure that Kollywood has lots to offer this year in spite of no big star release this year. Film producer and writer G. Dhananjayan says the industry will still reap profits during this long festive weekend — “There’s no reason for the fans to be disappointed. Top heroes can’t rush to release their movies every festival. In fact, all the four movies, which are slated for release this year, are creating enough buzz with interesting stories and impressive cast and crew. Given the long weekend ahead, I can safely say that fans will have a great time in theatres.” We can only hope that the likes of Vishal, Sivakarthikeyan, Udhayanidhi Stalin and Sasikumar will fill the void left by the absence of big stars.