Ramadan releases: Will Simbu, Jayam Ravi, Selvaraghavan's films revive box office in Tamil Nadu?
The Tamil Nadu box office is at an all time low, as movies are bombing one after the other. The summer of 2017 has seen only one real hit, the mega blockbuster Baahubali 2: The Conlcusion. It has broken all existing box-office records, including the seven year old record of Rajinikanth’s Endhiran (Robot) by a mile.
But finally, after a historic six week run at the number one spot at the Chennai box-office, the film also fell off. June has seen low footfalls in cinema theatres across the state as schools reopened and Ramadan fasting period set in.
Now all eyes are on the big Ramzan (Eid) weekend on 23 June. Three medium range Tamil films are planning to release on that day. They are Simbu aka Silambarasan’s Anbanavan Asaradhavan Adangadhavan (AAA) Jayam Ravi’s Vanamagan and star director Selvaraghavan‘s Nenjam Marappathillai.
The question being asked in the trade is whether these films will revive the market.
There are also two other language films - Salman Khan’s Tubelight and Allu Arjun’s Telugu film Duvvadu Jagannadham hitting the screens on the same day. All these films are fighting for limited theatre space, as there are hardly 1000 screens in the state.
Simbu’s AAA is the hottest film in the circuit and all areas have been sold out. The controversial Simbu’s last release with Nayanthara, Idhu Namma Aalu (2016), was a hit and the actor has an opening among the youth audiences. AAA has Simbu playing a triple role and is a two part film directed by Adhik Ravichandran. It is said to be an action comedy masala entertainer.
The part 2 of the film, produced by former MLA Miachel Rayappan, will release next summer. The film has two glamorous leading ladies in Shriya Saran and Tamannaah Bhatia, and the music is composed by Yuvan Shankar Raja.
Jayam Ravi’s film Vanamagan has the legendary Dilip Kumar’s grand niece Sayessha in the female lead, with music by Harris Jayaraj. In the film, Ravi plays a Tarzan-like person who grew up in the jungles among a lost tribe and is brought to the city by the heroine (a la George Of The Jungle?). There is a good buzz around the film which is said to be a family entertainer and has got a U certificate. The film will be one of the last Tamil films to get tax exemption before the GST regime gets rolling from 1 July.
And the third big film is noted director Selvaraghavan’s Nenjam Marappithillai which is said to be a Gothic horror film featuring SJ Surya and Regina Cassandra in the lead, with music by Yuvan Shankar Raja. The film got into trouble with the censor board for its violent horror elements and theme and was initially denied a certificate. But finally the film, after some cuts, got through the censors with a U/A certificate. It will also have a Telugu version.
Meanwhile, other than Vanamagan, there is no clarity on the release of AAA and Nenjam Marappithillai. AAA has applied for censor and under the new guidelines, it is taking time to get cleared. There are rumours in the trade that Selvaraghavan's film may be pushed to July, due to non availability of screens and Telugu distributors demanding a postponement as they do not want to clash with Allu Arjun’s DJ. Either way, there is going to be fireworks at the Tamil Nadu box-office this Eid as so many films go to battle for not only the screens but also the audiences.