Banner: Eka Veera Creations
Cast: Vijay, Asin, Raj Kiran, Roja, Vadivelu
Production: C Ramesh Babu
‘Kavalan’ is the forthcoming movie of Vijay which has a lot of things at stake. It is the 51st film of Vijay. After a fairly long poor run at the box office Vijay is expecting a lot out of this film. The heroine Asin is also praying for acceptance after her escapades in Sri Lanka has not gone down well with the Tamil community across the world.
‘Kavalan’ is the remake of the Malayalam film ‘Bodyguard’ and has nothing to do with the Kevin Costner film. The film was announced first with the title ‘Kaaval Karan’ and when Sathya Movies, the producer of the MGR super hit objected the title was changed to ‘Kaaval Kadhal’. But the changed title was not liked by Vijay fans and finally the film got the name ‘Kavalan’.
The film is about the strange fascination of a guy who worships anyone with a trace of heroism. He one comes across a reformed liquor mogul and now leading businessman and finds him to be his hero. He then joins him as the bodyguard to protect his beautiful daughter.
The body guard and the beautiful daughter fall in love without knowing to each other and later separate without wanting to. What happened to their love and after is the story. The first half is expected to be a hilarious entertainer while the story tales a serious turn in the second half and the climax will be a shocker.
In the original version the lead characters were played by Dileep, Nayantara, Mithra Kurian and Thiyagarajan. In Tamil the roles are played by Vijay, Asin, Mithra Kurian and Raj Kiran. Vadivelu is for comedy and Roja returns playing the wife of Raj Kiran. In fact Asin was first approached even for the Malayalam film. As she was busy with her Bollywood assignment Nayantara stepped in.
Livingston. MS Baskar, Delhi Ganesh, Nizhalgal Ravi are also in the cast. Music director is Vidyasagar and the film has six songs. Cinematography N K Ekambaram and Editing is by Gowri Shankar. The film is being made at a cost or Rs. 38 crores according to sources.
The Malayalam original was released in January this year and the Tamil version was up and going from April onwards. The first schedule happened in Kumbakonam. The whole movie was shot in places like Karaikudi, Kumbakonam and Vellore. Overseas shootings were done in Malaysia, Bangkok and Europe. This will be the second film in the combination of Siddique and Vijay. The first one was the ‘Friends’. Vijay and Asin come together after ‘Sivakasi’ and ‘Pokkiri’. All these combination films have been block busters and so the hype is already there.
But the film was in news for most times for reasons which were not production related. First then were precarious confusions over title. Then a controversy broke over the Tamil remake rights of the Malayalam film.
One Johnny Sagarikaa, a producer who had earlier obtained the remake rights of ‘Bodyguard’ in Tamil and other languages, reportedly mortgaged the remake rights to Gokulam Chit Funds for a financial loan. After knowing the Siddique is remaking his film in Tamil Johnny approached the Nadigar Sangam and the case in with them.
Then during the shooting in Karaikudi, Asin reportedly fainted allegedly due to a strange gas leak inside her caravan. Later they said it was due to a fault in the air-conditioner.
But the biggest controversy that is even threatening the release and then survival of the film was that Asin’s visit to Sri Lanka. When all the industry associations like TFPC, FEFSI, Tamil Nadu Theatre Owners and Distributors associations and SIFCC had requested the Indian film industry to boycott Sri Lanka for business as the country is standing trial for genocide of Tamils and human rights violations. But Asin went ahead and shot for her Hindi film with Salman Khan. She said she is under the contract of the producer and she has no power in deciding shooting locations.
Had she quietly done the shooting and come back things wouldn’t have gone this bad. Asin stayed back in Sri Lanka even after the shooting and travelled to places which were devastated by war, and banned for most of the world media and NGOs in with President Mahinda Rajapaksha’s wife Shiranthi and behaved like a government sponsored ambassador. This has angered the SIFCC and they have called for a ban of ‘Kavalan’ and subsequently on Asin.
Another recent development is that the producer-director Shakthi Chidambaram has acquired the film. When the distributors of Vijay’s earlier films have refused to back up ‘Kavalan’ and are demanding hefty compensation from Vijay saying his recent movies has put them in debt trap, the move of Shakthi Chidambaram is being considered a bold act by many. ‘Kavalan’ is produced by C Ramesh Babu under the banner of Eka Veera Creations.
‘Kavalan’ is all set to redefine the fate of almost all the people related to it. When the film releases in December many provoking questions would have found answers.