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Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru is one of my most extensive action films, says Karthi

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“We’ve made a very honest film,” says a confident Karthi, straight off the bat, as we start talking about his forthcoming Tamil release Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru.

In the film, he has donned khaki to play an upright police officer. Based on some true events that took place between 1995 and 2005, Karthi opens up about the film and working with director Vinoth in this exclusive chat with Firstpost.

This is not the first time Karthi has played a cop. In Siruthai, the Tamil remake of S.S Rajamouli’s Vikramarkudu, he was seen as a fierce police officer. He says Theeran is very different in its tone and presentation.

Karthi in Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru.

“What you saw in Siruthai was a much commercialised version of a cop. Even as a film, Siruthai is more commercial but Theeran is very realistic. In Theeran, you see a police officer’s life from close quarters. The ordeal police undergo to crack the case will make us realise how much they sacrifice to do their jobs. When I heard the story, it immediately struck a chord within. I found it to be very realistic and the way we’ve executed it will leave a strong impact,” he says, adding that he had heard about the case discussed in Theeran Adhigaaram Ondru while researching and preparing for his role in Siruthai.

“I remember hearing about the case in one of my discussions with a police officer. Later, I heard about this same real-life incident from Vinoth, and I felt strongly that I shouldn’t miss this project. Moreover, I loved Vinoth’s first film and I saw this as a great opportunity to work with him,” he adds.

Recalling the experience of working with Vinoth, Karthi says he has brought a new definition to the portrayal of cops on screen in Tamil cinema: “He’s very clear about what he wants. He even knows how much time is needed to shoot a particular scene. He was very well prepared and I was amazed by his clarity and balance. Even before I could come on board, he had done most of the research required to play my character. We have had several cop stories over the years but every time a new director comes along we get a new viewpoint about cops. Vinoth has given the cop story a new definition. Since the film is based on true events, it has a new flavor and nuances which I believe audiences will love.”

Was Theeran a challenging project to shoot, given its grueling outdoor schedule? Key portions of the film were shot across extremely hot places such as Jodhpur, Jaisalmer and Madhya Pradesh.

“The challenging part was to pack in all the elements to make the film work, and at the same time keep everything engaging. Right from the beginning Vinoth was clear that the film has to be entertaining, engaging and educative. It’s not easy to balance all these elements. As an actor, I found Kaashmora and Kaatru Veliyidai to be more demanding and challenging. Theeran, on the other hand, was physically taxing because it’s one of the most extensive action films for me. It wasn’t easy to execute the action sequences,” says Karthi.   

With the film slated for release on Friday, Karthi is looking forward to the reception from audiences.

“I’m waiting to watch how people will react. I think the result of any film is based on the response we get from the audience. A film has to be completed within stipulated time and budget and we believe we’ve given our best within these constraints. Since it’s based on true events, there are things which you can show and some you can’t. We also had to take all these factors to put together a product which is finally entertaining. It was not an easy call to take because you to have make certain compromises. Nevertheless, Vinoth has put together an entertainer that’s equally realistic,” concludes Karthi.

Also starring Rakul Preet Singh and Abhimanyu Singh in important roles, the film is produced by Dream Warrior Pictures and music by Ghibran. The film also releases in Telugu as Khakee.


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Namitha weds Veerandra Chowdhary in Tirupati; R Sarathkumar, Bigg Boss Tamil contestants attend

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Celebrity couple Namitha and Veerandra Chowdhary are finally hitched. In a private wedding ceremony, the actors got married early morning on Friday at the Tirupati ISKON temple, reports International Business Times.

Veerandra Chowdhary and Namitha. Facebook page of Wedding Street India

Veerandra Chowdhary and Namitha. Facebook page of Wedding Street India

As Namitha’s love affair with long time boyfriend Veerandra has been in the news for quite a time, the news of marriage was not a shocker. Both the celebrities’ fans started sharing congratulatory wishes, and pictures as soon as they hit social media. The pictures of Namitha’s mehendi, sangeet and other pre-wedding rituals went viral.

In the mehendi and sangeet pictures, Namitha is seen wearing jewellery made of flowers and a baby pink silk suit that add to her wedding glow. The couple clicked lovey-dovey selfies together that have taken the internet by storm. Veerandra looked uber happy in all the pictures donning a groom to be look in a blue kurta.

As per the same report, they tied the knot by following all the Hindu marriage rituals. There were priests present at the temple who chanted the Vedic mantras. The wedding was completed around 5.30 am after Veerandra and Namitha exchanged the final vows.

namitha wedding 2 825

Veerandra Chowdhary and Namitha. Facebook page of Wedding Street India

For the D day, initially, Namitha was seen in an electric blue sari coupled with gold jewellery. She looked absolutely flawless. Veerandra wore a sherwani with a contrast of blue and brown.

Finally, the couple stole the show in their wedding avatars as they entered the temple for the final rituals. Namitha, in a peach sari, and Veerandra, in a gorgeous sherwani, looked like the most sought after couple of this wedding season.

The wedding was attended by both the bride and groom’s friends, colleagues and relatives. R Sarathkumar, with wife Radhika, Harathi Ganesh and Shakthi were the mains among the invitees. Bigg Boss Tamil contestants also showed up for the special occasion. The couple will also host their colleagues from Kollywood at a reception party in Chennai soon.

(Also read — Zaheer Khan, Sagarika Ghatge wedding: Couple ties the knot, reception to be held on 27 November)


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Film Bazaar 2017 in Goa: A microcosm of the movie business, and haven for cinema lovers

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The Film Bazaar (held in Goa from 20 to 24 November) is a bit like the microcosm of the film world.

A National Film Development Corporation (NFDC) enterprise, The Bazaar, as it is mostly called, is a marketplace (or sorts) where films in various stages of development seek their perfect home among directors, producers, distributors, sales agents or festival programmers.

The Film Bazaar, over the last decade, has established a reputation for being a place where new voices are formed, films are realised and connections are renewed. But does that mean the most radical voices in cinema are continuously being honed in India?

Image courtesy Facebook: @NFDCIndia

Cameron Bailey, Festival Director of Toronto Film Festival, is probably someone who knows and has seen the wide range of India cinema more that most Indians. Bailey wonders if the winds of commerce that blow hard and strong in a country like India is slowly taming the most radical voices and independent styles. Rima Das’s Village Rockstars programmed at the Toronto Film festival this year was the result of the Viewing Room section from the Film Bazaar a couple of years back. That’s where the triumph of the Bazaar is; where every year there are people who leave behind the apprehensions that surround the lonely uphill struggle of a filmmaker and merge in the competition and the community created by the Film Bazaar.

Akshay Indikar is one of the five directors whose projects are a part of the Work in Progress lab this year. His first time at the Bazaar, Aranya (Forest) is a part of the Work in Progress Lab, a segment which selects 5 films at the rough-cut stage. Over the four days of the Bazaar, five directors and their films undergo extensive mentoring and honing. The lonely passion of a filmmaker, working against odds throughout the year, dissolves into a pursuit of hope and realisation.

Just like cinema brings to us stories and people we would have otherwise never met in modern societies, the Bazaar too gets together people bound by endless passion of making cinema and their unique journey, much like Indikar’s. “I come from a folk tradition, my family carries the Gondhli tradition in Maharashtra and it is only the last two generations who have houses. Traditionally we have been nomadic community,” he informs.

His film is about migration and everything that is lost in the process. I ask him what drove him to make films, and his answer comes without a thought — it was a moment etched in his memory. As a young high school student living in Pune, separated from his village and lonely in the city, Akshay decided to go to National Film Archives to watch a film. The film they were showing that day happened to be Satyajit Ray’s Pather Panchali and for the young student a universe of possibilities opened, a world of city and the village and the divide that lay between. And just like that a filmmaker was born.

It is a story which most of us may not know about, but within the energy of the Bazaar, it is a story that stays with you and gives you a sense of the power of cinema and the journey of a storyteller.

But the Bazaar is not just about filmmakers. It is also about spaces, and far-flung towns. Farooq Khan, Administrator of Union Territory of Lakshadweep, is in Film Bazaar for a different reason. To remind the film fraternity that the most beautiful land of ocean, light and corals lie across the islands of Lakshadweep. And he is here with the Film Federation Office with the simple objective, to encourage filmmakers to not just use Lakshadweep as a location for shoots but to look the unique life and culture of the place as a setting for a story.

A short conversation with Farooq Khan made me look at the way the Bazaar draws people from diverse places. And they all believe one thing: Cinema is larger than life, or perhaps life itself.


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Shah Rukh Khan reportedly asks for Priyanka Chopra to be replaced by Deepika Padukone in Don 3

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Since the producer of the Don franchise, Ritesh Sidhwani teased that the Don 3 might be under development; speculations on the highly anticipated third installment are rife.

Priyanka Chopra and Deepika Padukone. Images from Facebook

Priyanka Chopra and Deepika Padukone. Images from Facebook

The latest is that Shah Rukh Khan as asked Farhan Akhtar to rope in Deepika Padukone for Don 3, and replace Priyanka Chopra who had essayed the role of Roma in both Don and Don 2: The King Is Back, as reported by Deccan Chronicle.

The reason for this major change is being attributed to the cold vibes between Shah Rukh Khan and Priyanka Chopra who were rumoured to have been involved. In fact, social media had gone berserk when Priyanka Chopra had appeared on a US chat show wearing a leather jacket that belonged to her ex, and which was being concluded to be Shah Rukh’s jacket from old pictures, as reported by India Today.

However, it is also being said that Shah Rukh simply wants Deepika as his co-star because he considers them a hit pair with blockbusters like Om Shanti Om, Chennai Express, and Happy New Year under their belts. He wants to recreate the chemistry between the two for the box office success of Don 3, as reported by India Today.

Priyanka Chopra is busy abroad with her American projects and is currently shooting for the third season of her hit TV show Quantico. Deepika on the other hand is embroiled in a massive public storm against the release of her film Padmavati.

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