Trade Winds Movies

Will it be a 'Sarkar' Deepavali?

The Vijay-starrer hopes to repeat the the success story of last year’s Mersal

Sarkar is going to be a crucial film for Vijay. On Tuesday, the Madras High Court cleared all the decks for its release, after an out-of-court settlement over plagiarism charges. Director AR Murugadoss has now agreed to add a 30-second card before the credits, stating that the basic theme of his script was similar to that of scriptwriter Varun Rajendran. Varun had no objection against its release since the treatment given to Sarkar was different from his.

Vijay’s last release Mersal (2017) put him on a pedestal. According to the trade, he’s the numero uno star at the box-office. After his speech at Sarkar audio launch, it’s quite clear that Vijay is also keen on entering politics. In Sarkar, every character is said “to be political with an agenda of their own” and has a lot of political innuendoes relating to Tamil politics post-Jayalalithaa and Karunanidhi. Sarkar, which has been certified UA, has a running time of 163 minutes and 58 seconds. An overseas distributor commented, “Mark my words, the impact of Sarkar will be seen in the next Assembly elections in the State.”

The trade buzz is that the film has already yielded profits for its producers Sun Pictures, with worldwide theatrical rights alone fetching more than ₹100 crore. Eight years after Enthiran, Sun Pictures is back to film production. Following Sarkar, the production house has Rajinikanth-starrer Petta scheduled for a Pongal 2019 release. Sun Pictures will also bankroll the Sivakarthikeyan-Siva and Suriya-Hari projects next year.

The pre-release hype around Sarkar is phenomenal and it will have the biggest release worldwide. It will be screened in more than 2,500 screens (both Tamil and Telugu versions) on Deepavali. For the first time, many screens in Kerala have announced round-the-clock shows on its opening day. In Tamil Nadu, a bitter battle is brewing between exhibitors-distributors and State Government agencies over the number of shows. The Madras High Court has directed Government officials to take note of a complaint that not more than the stipulated shows are screened.

Vijay-AR Murugadoss is a cracker of a combination; the duo has given two successful entertainers, Thuppakki (2012) and Kaththi (2014). Both these films released on Deepavali and turned out to be blockbusters. Sold at a record price, the twin markets of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana are eagerly looking forward to Sarkar, which will have a Telugu dubbed version. The film will have a solo release in Tamil Nadu as Vijay Antony’s Thimiru Pudichavan has been postponed due to lack of screens.

Leading exhibitor and distributor Abirami Ramanathan, who has brought the Chennai distribution rights, says: “The film has huge expectations among audiences and the pressure for tickets is extraordinary. We are planning a carpet bombing of the screens in Chennai city, and advance booking will open once the producers give the green signal. As far as number of shows and timings are concerned, we will follow Government regulations.”

Vijay’s fans are already making enquiries whether Sarkar will have an early morning show, especially in the Chengalpet area. Currently, the producers are trying to control the hype. As per sources, the makers are keen that the first screening happens at the same time throughout the globe, without any special première show.

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Printable version | Feb 25, 2020 9:31:51 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/will-it-be-a-sarkar-deepavali/article25378642.ece

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