Trade Winds Movies

How will ‘Adithya Varma’ fare at the box office?

Dhruv Vikram in a scene from ‘Adithya Varma’

Dhruv Vikram in a scene from ‘Adithya Varma’   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

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Given the buzz around Dhruv Vikram, how different will ‘Adithya Varma’ be compared to ‘Arjun Reddy’ and ‘Kabir Singh’?

This Friday will be a litmus test for actor Vikram’s son, Dhruv, who is making his acting début with Adithya Varma, a remake of the Telugu blockbuster Arjun Reddy (2017). There has never been this kind of buzz around the launch of a star’s son. Everyone is keen on watching Dhruv’s tricks on the screen, even when his father is in the top of his game.

From whatever we have seen in the trailer, it is safe to say that Dhruv has shades of Vikram — both in terms of looks and performance. Vikram, apparently, was present throughout the shoot and was giving valuable inputs to his son. The actor, in fact, was also there at the edit table during the post-production. Vikram said that Adithya Varma will be a softer version compared to its counterparts — Arjun Reddy and Kabir Singh — that were vehemently criticised for glorifying misogyny and violence against women. The Tamil version of Arjun Reddy was announced much before Kabir Singh. However, the remake hit a roadblock, when its makers decided to scrap the entire film, which was directed by Bala and titled Varma. Director Gireesaaya, a former assistant of Sandeep Reddy who directed the Telugu original, took over the reins of direction. About the film’s problematic storyline, producer Mukesh Mehta said, “It is a remake of a cult classic. We had to tone it down to suit the taste of Tamil audiences. The film has come out really well. Dhruv is just magical on screen.”

 

What the trade says

The “curiosity factor around Dhruv Vikram” has made Adithya Varma red hot in the trade circuit. Reports suggest that most of the distributors in Tamil Nadu have struck a deal on “returnable advance and MG basis” for a price of ₹9 cr. The prices for overseas, Kerala and Karnataka rights have gone up to ₹2 cr. The television and digital rights have added another ₹5 cr. A film with a new hero doing a pre-release business of over ₹16 cr has not happened in the recent past in Kollywood. Theatre owners have allotted prime shows across Tamil Nadu, with the number of screens going up to 350. Speaking about the craze for Adithya Varma, a leading multiplex programmer said, “We are hoping that Adithya Varma brings in the audience after a smashing Deepavali (Bigil and Kaithi). Though the film was supposed to release on November 8, this Friday (November 22) makes more sense since the movies released on Deepavali have completed their run at the box office.”

The journey so far
  • Telugu film Arjun Reddy followed the story of a medical surgeon with anger management issues. The film, directed by Sandeep Reddy Vanga, shot its star Vijay Deverakonda to superstardom.
  • Unlike the Telugu version, its Hindi remake, Kabir Singh, was severely criticised for its problematic content. Despite the reviews, the film grossed more than ₹250 crore at the box office.
  • Director Bala was initially roped in to handle the Tamil remake titled Varma. However, the producers were not satisfied with the product and scrapped the entire film.
  • Varma later became Adithya Varma, with Sandeep Vanga’s assistant Gireesaaya coming to the rescue.

How did Adithya Varma create such hype in the first place? Well, the team’s aggressive promotions have paid off. They had their strategy — to cater to youngsters — well in place, by visiting a series of colleges across states. But the boy is quite nervous about the release, “It has been a two-year-long process and finally D-Day is here. I’m dying to see the audience’s reaction and will be watching the first day first show along with them. We have made it with a lot of love and care and I hope the audience accepts me,” said Dhruv. At the same time, he credits his father for his guidance and expertise. “I owe it to my dad. He had an intuition that Sethu will be a breakthrough film when nobody believed in him. Similarly, he wanted me to début with Adithya Varma. I have no qualms in saying that it is my Appa’s film. Being the son of Vikram definitely helped grab eyeballs.”

The hype around Dhruv has resulted in terrific advance booking throughout Tamil Nadu. The trade is certain that Adithya Varma has the potential to become a money-spinner by the end of its first week run. To what level will depend on the reviews.

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Printable version | Dec 16, 2019 6:03:48 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/adithya-varma-is-here/article30027604.ece

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