As the MGR-Jayalalithaa starrer Aayirathil Oruvan ’s new digitised version celebrated the silver jubilee here on Monday, AIADMK general secretary and Chief Minister Jayalalithaa declared that the film had paved the way for her entry into politics.
Ms. Jayalalithaa, who first played opposite MGR in the film released in 1965 and continued to pair with him in 28 films, the maximum for any heroine, said the film gave her an unforgettable and lifelong experience.‘It’s still fresh’
“It was a successful film, and it gave me an opportunity to meet and converse with MGR. It is not an exaggeration to say that the film paved the way for my entry into politics,” she said in a message sent to Divya Films that released the digitised version of the film which has had a successful rerun.
“Even 50 years after its release, the film remains like a fresh lotus depicted in a beautiful painting,” she said.
Ms. Jayalalithaa’s speech was read out by G. Chockalingam of Divya Films at a function attended by M.S. Viswanathan, music director of the film; P. Susheela, playback singer of Ms. Jayalalithaa in the film; R.K. Shanmugam, dialogue writer; and Muthu, the makeup man of MGR.
Ms. Jayalalithaa said that at a time when a film was celebrated for completing a week in theatres, Aayirthil Oruvan had run over 100 days in 1965, and the digitised version now completed 175 days. “It stands testimony to the quality of the story and the talent of those who participated in the making of the film,” she said. The film transcended time and attracted people from all sections, particularly the youth.
Actor R. Sarathkumur said that long before the advent of the technological revolution, MGR was able to conceptualise a film that could match Pirates of the Caribbean in every aspect. “His political message was conveyed through the film.”
The digitised version was released in 122 theatres across the State and remained a popular draw in two city theatres.