Tamil Movie News--Pudhu Edition 2

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Sandya Sitaraman

Jan 17, 1997, 3:00:00 AM1/17/97

***Ellorukkum Vanakkam***

***Tamil Movie News(Cont.)***

***Kadhaa-Naayagans and Naayagis***
(Who's HOT.. In-the-Middle.. NOT! (Cont.))

***Rajinikanth.. (Always HOT!).. Though his last movie "Muthu" was
released for Deepavali 1995 and there has been a big mum ever since..
Rajini fans were quite eager to see him come back as soon as possible.
Having put aside the political charchais, Rajinikanth announced
"Arunaachalam" as his next project designed to help 8 of his
colleagues/friends in Kodambakkam, who are now struggling to survive in the
industry. Ramba, Soundarya, Jayaram, Anju Arvind, Janakaraj, Manorama,
Raja, Vignesh, Nizhalgal Ravi and Raghuvaran, star in "Arunaachalam," a
film designed to make the viewer laugh his heart out!.. Crazy Mohan writes
the dialogues for this film, under the Rajini Arts banner!.. Though the
film was slated for an April/Tamil New Year 1997 release, some forecast a
much earlier release.. how about for Pongal 1997?!.. Maybe too much nappaasai!..

But before the title "Arunaachalam" was decided upon, there was a lot of
confusion, as Rajini registered two titles, "Kuberan," and "Mesthiri" with
the Film Chamber!.. Whatever discussions ensued, no one knows.. but
definitely one of these titles is sure to come up soon!..

Suresh Krishna has also had a bad phase without Rajini, since they
last worked on "Baadhshaa" together!.. Indeed, there is a very strong
possibility that Rajini may begin "Kuberan" with Krishna, as soon as
"Arunaachalam" is completed!.. But Su.Krishna hesitates to say anything
about the project!.. We'll just have to wait and see!..
(Super Star-u yaarunu kettaa chinna kuzhandhai-yum (eppodhum) sollum!)..

***Sukanya.. (In-M).. Her career has been looking like a graph, with more
pitfalls than peaks!.. "Mahaprabhu" fared okay, leaving Sukanya
grappling for some good roles. Like many of her fans, she had also lost
hope in seeing Bhagyaraj's "Gnanapazham" releasing anytime soon, until
it finally did for Deepavali this year.. Unlike Kamal's makeup, nobody
praised Sukanya's acting or her make-up in "Indhiyan." Instead, she was
consecutively offered several kizhavi roles in films!.. With a long list
of disappointments and lack of recognition, Sukanya spent most of the year
trying to find some name for herself in a kavarchi-filled world!..
"Parivattam" earned her a good name, while "Senaadhibadhi" treated her
as a side-show doll!.. Her house was raided this year, since she was
believed to have some involvement with minister Kannappan!.. Things did
not even remotely appear to be bright.. Hopefully 1997 "pudhu nell-um
pudhu naathth-um" thirumbavum varum as Sukanya stars in "Gopura Deepam"
with Ramarajan!..

***Radhika and Gouthami..(NOT!) Both remained extremely quiet in 1996!..
Radhika was busy producing and directing tele-serials and did not bother
much with acting in films!.. While Gouthami acted in telegu and malayalam
films, thamizh-yil aall-aiye kannom!.. Gouthami has already stated in
press interviews that she is taking a short break from films and going to
America to stay with her brother, for a while!.. She wants to study some
new subjects that might be related to the cine field (Director aaga
aasai-yo?).. Moreover, Gouthami says that If I get married soon, it might
even be in Ragavendra Kalyaana Mandapam! (Idhu eppadi irukku?!).. Gouthami
has just completed acting in Maniratnam's "Iruvar" and has a few more
kannada films to finish before she leaves for the U.S. Meanwhile, Radhika
is starring in "Karuvelam Poo" with Nasar and Soniya, K.T.Kunjumon's
"Sakthi," with Vineeth and Yuvarani, "Veerathaalaattu" with Napes and a
few more village background flicks!.. Paan Paraaga pottu kittu Savithiri
thirippiyum Kodambakka-ththukku nadandhu varuvaalla, naina?..

***Arjun.. (In-M) With Naattu Pattru as the main theme for all his movies,
Arjun did mediocre work this year!.. Even though it had all the right
ingredients of a good masala, "Shengotai" bombed, and "Subaash" faired
okay at the box office!.. But, as always, Arjun is dancing his way to
glory, as he already knows that dancing is what really makes a 'tamil
movie hero.' His dances with Ramba and Monica Bedi again received the
spotlights this year!.. As of October 1996, Arjun began his own revered
project "Thaayin Manikodi" with Bangalore model Nivedhita, Manivannan and
Vijaykumar, on location in Switzerland!.. Vijayashanthi-yoda peyir-ai idha
list-la kannum-me!.. Because of visitor visa restrictions for tourists of
Canada, Arjun had to settle for Switzerland to picturize part of the
film!.. Besides, "Tha. Man." Arjun also stars in R.K.Selvamani's "Adimai
Sangili" with Ramba, Roja, Ponambalam and others. The entire film is set
in the thick jungles near "Top Slip" close to Pollaachi and the story is
loosely based on a real incident of villagers overcoming a bunch of
violent looters.

***Murali and Arunpandian.. (NOT! forever?).. For some strange reason,
both Murali's and Arunpandian's careers appear to be permanent question
marks!.. With unbearable films like "Aavadhu Pennaley Azhivadhu Pennaley"
and "Thaayagam" ruining Arunpandian's "Oomai Vizhigal" reputation of
yester years, AP has decided to join forces with Murali in "Roja Malare,"
directed by newcomer T.S.Jayamurugan. Arunpandian also stars with Suman
in "Jackie Chan," which is being made in 3 different languages. Murali's
"Poomani," hard to predict any outcomes, as yet!.. But luck might be on
the way, as he stars in "Kaalamellaam Kaadhal Vaazhga" with newcomer
Kausalya, under first-time director Balu.. Murali was also supposed to
star in "Veerathalaattu" with Kushboo, Radhika, and Lakshmi, but no word
on the movie's progress, ever since it went into production!..

***Livingston.. Koorai-yai pichchu kondu kottum adhistam!.. Maadi padi
yeri yeri, production company after another-kku than "Sundhara Purushan"
story-ai sonnavar!.. Every single one said: Neenga vennaa direct pannunga,
aana hero verai yaarai-yaavadhu podalaame!.. Paavam Livingston, he was
furious, but he couldn't do anything about it!.. Finally, he meets
R.B.Choudhri who gives him a legitimate shot at acting as a hero, while
S.D.Sabhapadhy made his directorial debut in "Sundhara Purushan," Su.
Pu. periya hit!.. Now, Liv is bombarded with offers to star in several
producers' films!.. Besides working on a film for R.B.C., Liv is also
busy with Ibrahim Rauthar's new film "Unakkum Enakkum Kalyaanam" with
Devayaani!.. Idhu allava Luck!!..

***Meena.. (In-M) Ever since she danced with Rajini in "Maadathile Kanni
Maadathile" in "Veera," Meena has constantly been cast in at least one
song sequence or movie with a 'madishaar' sequence in it!.. Indha varushamum
adhay kadhai dhaan!.. She danced part of "Vennilaave Vellai Poove" in a
madishaar pudavai, in "Shengotai," yet the film shrunk at the box office.
Add her performance in the 'all-mami' "Avvai Shanmugi," yet another
madishaar flick!.. It just so happens, "Av.Shanmugi" was the highest
grossing film among Deepavali releases!.. Meena was supposed to act in
"Ponvillaiyira Bhoomi," with Rajkiran.. But she had call sheets problems
and had to let go of the film!.. Meena was again predicted to star in
"Arunaachalam" with Rajini.. but tata to that three-peat!.. "Bharathi
Kannamma" with Parthiban still remains in the making, as Meena's name
still appears on the cast list for R.B.Choudhri's "Paamaran".. Still no
confirmation on that!..

***Jayaram.. (In-M).. A strange year for Jayaram as none of his films
fared extremely well!.. "Pudhu Nilavu" bombed, while "Parivattam" might
have done passably at the box office, though comedy comes naturally to
him!.. But Jayaram is sensible in that he has signed some films with a lot
of acting potential for him, for next year, including "Devaraj" (previously
titled "Mr. Devaraj") with Ranjitha, Goundamani, and Senthil.. Directed by
Rasi Azhagappan!.. Gurudhanapal's "Periya Idaththu Mapillai" which appears
to be a full length comedy with Devayaani, R.V.Udhayakumar's "Chinna Saami
Periya Saami" with Jayaram playing Chinna Saami!.. and Finally, somewhat
of a guest (special) role, under Rajini's request in "Arunachalam".. Still
no word on Jayaram in Sundar C.'s next project "Naatarasan Kottai"..

***Heera.. Thuraththi Thuraththi Kaadhal-iththu Heera jamaaiththu-fied
this year!.. But of course, the hottest news was her alledged love affair
with Ajeethkumar, ever since they meet on the sets of "Kaadhal Kottai"..
Every magazine and newspaper followed the hot trails for more juicy bits
about their kaadhal!.. Ajeeth was having the time of his life giving
interviews, while Heera shunned the matter.. "Naan onnum sollalai..
Ungalukku (reporters) karpanai vallam romba adhigam!".. After that rumour
died down, Heera took over the supporting actress role in "Avvai
Shanmugi!".. Now, she is flat out thrilled: she gets the opportunity to
kalakku-fy Kamalhasan's Hindi production of "Magalir Mattum," as "Ladies
Only," in Revathi's role!.. The biggest thrill got shatterred as Heera
lost her chance to newcomer Simran, to act in a Bharathiraja movie,
"Siragugal Murivadhillai" with Napolean, produced by P.G.Srikanth
("Seevalaperi Pandi," "Musthafa").. Nondhu ponaalum, Heera also stars in
"Thadayam" with Ramki and Vijayashanthi, a film made in 3 different

***Prabhu.. (In-M) Ilaya Thilakam has never had any major problems signing
films.. He has just had trouble keeping them in theatres!.. Same case this
year too!.. Vandha 3 padaththile, two films "Parambarai" and "Siva Shakthi"
did fairly well, but "Sirachchaalai" & "Panchaalang-kuruchi".. The few
coins at the cash register should really tell the story!.. Prabhu was very
cautious this year!.. Romba samarthaagi vittar!.. He doesn't tease or play
around with other heroines as he used to, and takes his wife and children
to public places and functions. Furthermore, Prabhu is also in the process
of getting Directors Robert and Rajesekaran back together for a film..
Maybe he wants to rebuild his career with a venture like "Chinna Poove
Mella Pesu," from a few years ago. Prabhu is busily working on the sets
of "Mapillai Goundar" with Sakshi and Swathi and direction by Manivasakam
("Nadodi Mannan," "Kattaboman")and "Thedinen Vandhadhu" with Manthra and
direction by Ravi Verma and produced by Sivashri Pictures ("Subaash")..

***Manisha and Tabu.. (In-M).. With a terrific tamil film debut in
"Bombay," Manisha "Indhiyan"-il romba shorndhu ponavar-aai therindhaar!..
The film was a big hit, but Mani herself knew that she didn't do much in
the film!.. Ivarukkum Nana Patekar-ukkum irukkara Love matter became
'aval' for reporters to 'mennu-fy' this year!.. Tabu's story is a bit
different!.. Vandha podhe, "Sirachchaalai"-yil 'azhagaaga' irukkum nadigai
peyir vangiyaachu!.. Padam dhaan kaanaamal poyi vittadhu!.. But the
success of "Kaadhal Desam" has put an all new light on things!.. Nadippu
illai yendraal yenna, 'kavarchi,' irukkiradhe!!.. Tabu is doing a small
role in Maniratnam's "Iruvar" as well, even though she regrets the fact
she could not accept a bigger role, because of call sheet problems!..
Manisha was a part of the "Pulithevan" cast along with Prasanth and
Sangita.. But since "Mannavaa" still has yet to see the insides of a
theatre, "Pulithevan" production might never take flight!..

***Arvind Swamy.. (NOT!).. The young, educated, handsome hero role-kku
dhaan AS porundhuvaar!--seems to be the standard deduction of all his fans
so far!.. To many, he seemed very out of place as a Choundy in
"Devaraagam" and maybe even a bit younger looking to Sridevi.. Whatever
the case maybe, Arvind Swamy's only film for 1996 failed!.. Adding fuel to
the fire, "Pudhayal" has not even managed to scrounge into theatres yet!..
The film, which has been in production, for almost one year now, stars
Mamooty, Aamni, AS and Sakshi, and no sign of it releasing anytime soon!..
Arvind Swamy's latest "Minsaara Kanavu" is expected for release on Pongal
day, 1997!.. There is yet another kooththu going on with "Minsaara
Kanavu".. The latest vathanthi is that Arvind's role has been given more
scope than Prabhudeva, since PD's films are not faring well at the box
office. Of course, Arvind Swamy, "appadi ellam onnum illai" yendru
sollgiraar!.. Padam paarthaal dhaan theriyum..

AS can be happy that his voice was preserved for some poetic verses which
were recited as a part of "Iruvar." Interesing, that Mani would preserve
his voice, when AS wasn't even part of the film!.. AS is also involved in
the Hindi re-make of "Thenmaavin Kombaththu," which was taken as "Muthu"
in tamil!.. As much as possible, AS stays away from the lime light and
travels to America a lot, since he has many friends there!..

***Rakshana and Swathi.. Miss. Bengal, Rakshana had quite an impressive
year by tamil cinema standards. Her debut in "Poovarasan," was not mocked
at, and her show doll performance in "Tata Birla" did not go unnoticed!..
It is in some hope that P.Vasu has signed her to star with Parthiban in
"Vaaimaiye Vellum." Though Swathi got a similar treatment in 'love
rumours' from Ajeethkumar, just before 'Vaanmadhi' hit theatres, she
recovered rather nicely to act in Saravanan's "Vishwanath".. Mudhalukku
mosham illai!.. Swathi would probably never discuss "Vasantha Vaasal" with
anyone, as it bombed too!.. Swathi is swarmed with films currently,
including "Sivan" with Napolean, "Maappilai Goundar" with Prabhu, and "My
India" with Karate Husseini!.. 1997 might be bigger and better, after all!..

***Ramki.. (HOT!) Director K.R. dhaya-vil Ramki has a solid market in
family oriented flicks today!.. It was two extraordinary (somewhat
unexpected) hits in "Irattai Roja," and "Enakkoru Magan Pirappan" that
made him very successful this year!.. "Raajali,""Karuppu Roja," "En
Aasai Thangachi" balti adichchu-fied, but luckily, the K.R. films came in
quite handy!.. Ramki was also caught in some important kisu kisus this
year with actress Nirosha.. As always, "avar ivarai kalyanam seidhu
kondar. Ivar avaroda pillai-yai sumandhu kondu irukkiraar" type vathanthis
were flying around, despite "illai" protests from Ramki, who denies any
involvement with Radhika's sister! Ramki is busy with a few small budget
films, yedhuvum perisaaga pesum badi, ippodhai-kku illai!.. One notable
exception is Ibrahim Rauthar's "Dhinamum Ennai Gavani" which was ready for
a Deepavali release, don't know what it's nilamai is now!. Ramki, Sangavi,
Prakashraj and Vivek star, with direction by A.R.Ramesh!..

***Sangavi and Oorvasi.. Sangavi ran off to the telegu film industry this
year, soon after "Coimbatore Maapillai" was released. Since many Northie
kavarchi 'thimingalams' arrived earlier in the year, Paavam Sangavi's
chances were all swallowed up nicely by the newcomers. Moreover, Sangavi
than thalai-yil slight-aaga mannai vaari pottu kondaar. She refused the
supporting actress role in "Avvai Shanmugi," saying that she did not like
the role. Heera was more than glad to grab the opportunity. Oorvasi also
had a slow year. Oorvasi seems to have had fun in "Irattai Roja" and the
film was quite a success, but the same could not be said of "Aruvaavelu."
Oorvasi is completing "Aravindhan" with Saratkumar, Nagma and Parthiban,
and is also working on Kasthuriraja's "Yettupatti Raasa" with Napolean and
Kushboo!.. The much awaited "Mannavaa" with Prasanth and Sangavi,
under the direction of newcomer Balaji, could also bring a turning
point for her this year!.. Oorvasi is also seriously contemplating writing
a story and directing a film in Tamil, in the very near future!.. Sadly,
nothing in the range of "Oththayile ninadhenna.. en mannavane, mannavane!"
this year!..

***Pandiarajan.. Poor Pandi!.. Those "Aan Paavam" days really seem to be
gone, for him!.. "Kaalam Maari Pochchu" was a huge hit, but after all, it
was only a koottu muyarchi and Pandi wasn't particularly the main hero!..
His "Summa Irunga Machchan" was dismal this year.. and Pandi was really
needing something good to become successful again!.. The last two months
of 1996 became crucial for him, as "Purushan Pondaatti," and "Gopala
Gopala," both released, almost simultaneously!.. "Gop.Gop." which is, in
many ways, a traditional Bhagyaraj type comedy, has been kalakku-fying
Chennai, and Pandi as actor and director is BACK!.. Pandi is currently at
work on "Saiva Kokku" another film with Kushboo playing his pair!.. A
grand welcome back to Pandiarajan!.. Lots of good luck from SCT!

***Vijaykanth.. VijayK is probably more excited about his 150th film
"Ulavuthurai," which might come out for Pongal 1997, than any of the films
he acted this year!.. "Thaayagam" left many fans disgruntled and bored,
while "Alexander" drove few crowds to theatres. But 1997 appears to be
one heck of a year for VijayK as his dosth Ibrahim Rauthar produces 4
films, including "Ulavuthurai" with first-time director Ramesh Selvan in
charge. Besides this, Vijaykanth is also busily shooting "Dharma Chakram"
with Rambha, under K.S.Ravikumar's ("Avvai Shanmugi") direction!.. "Chinna
Goundar"-ukku eppodhum thani mousu dhaan!..

***Roja.. R.K.Selvamani's sweetheart did various roles in different films,
besides her fiance's films!.. Roja, in some ways, was in control of most
of the films which did fairly to moderately well at the box office!..
"Parambarai" was the best of lot in returns, since "Raajaali" and "Thamizh
Selvan," crashed at the box office!.. Aanaalum Roja industry-ai kalakki
kondu dhaan irukkiraar!.. She stars in "Rathayaathirai" with Rajasekar,
which is being taken in telegu and tamil. She also stars with Sathyaraj
in "Vallal," with Mamooty, Mansoor AliKhan and Shilpa Shirodhkar in her
fiance's "Arasiyal." Plus, one more film with R.K.S: "Adimai Sangili" with
Arjun and Ramba!.. As always, Roja-vukku telegu market bayangara strong..
If not tamil, telegu industry can be relied on completely!.. Northie wave
onjadhukku appuram, Roja-vukku nalla chance nichchayam varum!.. But when
are those dum-dums? Marriage endra pech-chai yeduththaale, Roja and RKS
keep mum, so reporters have stopped asking such questions now!..

***Parthiban.. The man who vowed that he would never take another vulgar
movie again, went back on his promise this year, with "Tata Birla."
Paavam Parthiban.. his last 1995 flick "Pullaikkuttikaran" did not
deliver the goods at the box office, at least not as much as expected!..
Nalla kadhai oduvadhillai yendru mudivukke vandhu vittaar!.. Yet, there is
still hope that Parthi will adopt a "pudhiya paadhai" in films like
"Bharathi Kannamma," "Kaangeyam Kaalai," "Kalyaana Sundharam," and
"Aravindhan" which are still in production!.. At one time, Parthi was
going to make a 'uththamam'-aana padam titled "Piriyamaanavale" with his
wife Sita co-starring!.. Andha padathoda indraiya nilai yaarukkum
theriyaadhu!.. and what about "Soththukatchi?" The last we know, it was
still on when the International Film Festival was held in Delhi and
Parthi, Sita couple attended the function, by cancelling a few shootings
of "Soththukatchi!".. Paadhi Paadhi-yaa nirkkum padangal-ukku karanam
yennavo, Parthi?!..

***Napolean.. This uyaramaana nadigar profusely apologized to his wife,
just because he could not dance and do exciting, romantic gestures to show
variety in his films!.. Hey, it is no surprise that his wife is
complaining!.. "Musthafa," and "Raajali" were crushed mercilessly at the
box office.. Napolean mugaththai moodi kollum nilamai-kku vandhu
vittaar!.. But things have been looking up.. somewhat.. as Napes stars in
Bharathiraja's "Siragugal Murivadhillai".. It happens to be Napes' 50th
film and it is indeed a thrill that he stars in his 50th film under his
guru's direction!.. Napes also stars in "Bhagavath Singh" with Sangavi and
Rasika (who makes her debut in Gangai Amaran's "Poonjolai") and Velu
Prabhakaran's "Sivan" with Swathi and Radhika.. "Yettupatti Raasa" with
Kushboo and Oorvasi and even a film titled "Veerappan," which Napes
defends as "nothing to do with Chandhana kadaththal Veerappan"..
(Ippodhai-kku 'vandi kodai saayaadhu'-nu nambuvom)

Last, but not least..

***Nagma.. She was involved in the most number of rumours and controversies
this year!.. With "Love Birds" going bust and "Mettukkudi" bringing back
her into the lime light.. Nagma's busy career was not over!.. She was
caught begging on behalf of her sister Raththikaa, now 'Rosni,' pleading
with directors and producers to give her sister a chance in tamil films!.
Luckily, Nagma's begging days are over now, since Rosni is all set to star
with Karthik in "Shishya" and "Puli Pirandha Mannu" with Napolean.

Yet, her woes have just begun!.. She has been accussed of fighting with
Ramba on the sets of "Janakiraman," as well as stomping off angrily at
Prabhu and Director Chitra Lakshmanan, during the "Periya Thambi" shooting!.
According to Nagma.. "aththanai-yum poi, pulugu! Unmaiye illai!".. Well,
ella nadigai-yum sollaradhu dhaane?!.. But with all the vathathanthis and
pulugu mootai stories about her, she is still very popular and a big
kavarchi kadhaanayagi in the South today.. so the films keep flowing in
plenty. Nagma stars with Saratkumar and Parthiban in T.Siva's
"Aravindhan," K.Bhagyaraj's "Vettiya Madichchu Kattu," and Sundhar C.'s
"Janakiraman" with Sarat and Ramba!.. Mukkaabla Laila-na summaavaa?..


My Sources: Anandha Vikatan, Cinema Express..



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