Monday, May 08, 2006

The Fall Of The King?

I consider director Dharani to be the king of the masala genre in Tamil films. In his movies Dhill, Dhool and Gilli, he proved decisively that he had mastered the art of dishing out racy entertainers with something for everything. All the movies were based on the same theme of an ordinary man going up against a more powerful man. But the secret lay in the packaging. They all had macho heroes, cute romances, minimal sentiments and hair-raising action and kept us rooted in our seats with a fast pace (I own all three of them).

So, as a fan, I was very sad when Dharani went over to the Telugu filmworld. He was a big one in the brigade of promising Tamil directors(which has since included Murugadoss and Selvaraghavan) who went to direct straight Telugu films. But Dharani's film with Pawan Kalyan, Bangaram, was released last week and has earned the worst reviews I've read in a long, long time. It is being called sadistic, boring, rambling and long and the general opinion prompted the producer to trim 22 minutes within day of the movie's release. Vijay, who was planning to star in the remake, has also dropped the idea after the movie's failure.

So should we be sad that yet another Tamil director has failed in another language? Or should we be happy that he's gonna pack up his stuff and return to Tamil films? Mixed emotions...

28 Comments:

At 10:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Frankly, I welcome Dharani back with open hands, Balaji. So what if he failed in Telugu?.. Ideally, our psychology is that nobody we favor should ever fail in our eyes.. Fortunately, failure is what makes a good filmmaker the best he or she can ever be. Watch for Dharani to come back with a vengeance in Tamil in what I'd assume to be a Vikram starrer next! Some people are always better coming back to where they belong (it was not so long ago we had the same discussion about directors who went to Hindi and failed!)

It may be a bad example, two continuous flops in Nayak and Boys, gave way to Anniyan that really resurrected Shankar's career.. Of course, Anniyan was only a patch on the quality of Indhiyan and Mudhalvan.. nevertheless!

Balaji, don't fret! :-) After all, yaanaikkum adi sarukkum! ;-)..

 
At 10:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

balaji, i kinda expected to see a post abt this here today :)

agree abt the mixed emotions, on the other hand, this is just another lesson not to take anything for granted

i havent watched the movie, but i'm thinking its debacle's got something to do with complacency getting to the director's head after a hatrick success

ps: waiting for ur AIBI review - one of the rare occasions i've watched the movie before reading ur review :)

 
At 10:44 PM, Blogger Prasanna said...

Its ofcourse good news. Guess Tamil Industry didnt deserve losing a director like Dharani. And maybe thats why the movie flopped. So lets welcome Dharani back.
I ve always felt that Telugu industry isnt the one to produce quality movies,maybe there are some exceptions.Or wld it have lost a director like Ram Gopal Verma, who gave a classic in his first venture?
So guess Dharani ll be back with a bang and give his best to tamil industry, as he always does.

 
At 11:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Poor Dharani. Just hope he can bounce back after this failure and return to Tamil movies with a vigor. Poruthirundhu Paarpom.

BTW, latest heroine to catch my "sighting" eye (roving eye-nu sonaa sisters thappa nenachukka poraange!) -> Mamta Mohandas from the launch of "Sivappathigaram" (Indiaglitz).

 
At 12:13 AM, Blogger Bart said...

Its mixed emotions. But this failure can be attributed to the difference of opinion between Dharani and Pawan Kalyan mid-way into the making of the movie. The project got delayed to such an extent that it released after 2 yrs since it was announced.
Reminds me the tamil equivalent of the proverb, "Be a king in your homeland rather being a pawn elsewhere".

 
At 12:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bart, read this, maybe this was the real reason. Kind of interesting considering A.M.Ratnam is known to be one of the biggest spenders among producers in the South.

 
At 2:22 AM, Blogger Bart said...

Sandya, what you say is right. The following link affirms both the news:
http://telugu.cinesouth.com/english/masala/hotnews/new/28012006-1.shtml

 
At 5:08 AM, Blogger skanda said...

Well...our tamil director are becoming very greedy...they go and seek greener pastures in other languages and end up with an egg...directors like Gautham Menon, KS Ravikumar, Shankar have failed in other languages..yet our tamil director does not seem to learn thier lesson....

I am damn suprised that mo telugu or Hindi directore ever directing a tamil film...why do our directors have to go there...i dunt understand this..

 
At 8:10 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

SK,
Why think greedy? Frankly, the markets are bigger in Telugu. Would you not opt to take a promotion than not?

Dharani probably was thinking he can't fail with his formula. But even while in the making, there were problems b/w hero and director as the hero was unsatisfied with the way the film was going. I guess Pawan was right to be upset. The most popular telugu cine site "idlebrain" did not even review the film. This film should be a big lesson to producers like AM Ratnam. It's popularly known that he has been one of the producers who pull heros/directors etc with big money offers.

If Dharani makes a comeback in Tamil great.
-kajan

 
At 10:28 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mani Rathnam's next 2 movies might be in Hindi too. But I heard the reason was that Mani wasnt pleased with the reception for his last 2 movies and also felt the Tamil filmdom was becoming more hero-centric.Not sure if it is true. We will know about it later on.

King of masala movies-Shankar illaya?

I might be in the minority here not sympathizing with the likes of DharaNi when their old-masala-in-a-new packet fails to kick off. It means go back to your drawing board and think of something different.

And Tamil directors making movies in other languages is perfectly OK with me if that means the likes of Perarasu, KS ravikumar etc. would leave us for a while :-)

 
At 10:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Greedy?.. I don't think so. Tell me something!.. Vikram has a huge market in Telugu & now Malayalam and so is the case with Vijay. Did any of you catch the huge article in Kumudam not too long ago about how heroes from tamil cinema are making Telugu heroes gadhi kalangu-fy in Tollywood. Our Ghajinis, Chandramukhis and Anniyans are doing incredulous business in Tollywood and elsewhere that all those heroes are p--ing in their pants! (for lack of a better expression!).. Even lesser actors like Simbu are making their mark with films like Manmadhan. We spell success all over India. Also, Ajeeth might be going through a bad patch right now, but industry sources claim that he is the closest to Rajini when it comes to grand openings (wait for Godfather! :-) ;-).. we surely have another one coming!..

In turn, they think they can take our directors away from us and test out the formula.. But I think the secret is not necessarily with the directors but lies within the actors and actresses in the field. Not to take away too much from a director like Murugadass, but credit should be given to him (for creating an effective script (for people to buy into!) in Ghajini) that has made true stars out of Surya and Asin. Let's not fool ourselves.. don't we all feel a little giddy knowing that every prominent Telugu actor and Hindi actor is running behind our South Indian and/or Tamil technician or director to salvage their movie career.

Are there any Tollywood Cinema gurus here in this blog, who could vouch for Pawan Kalyan's star status and acting capacity (as compared to our Vikram or Surya!)..

Frankly, you can make a case for all our directors headed to Hindi, but going to Telugu has become a regular feature around here and absolutely nothing to balk about anymore!.. Hindi has the big bucks (surely, nobody here questions that, I hope!), but going to Telugu and playing a game of cards doesn't make any of our directors greedy. I don't think Murugadass can make more money or show more of his calibre just because he directs Chiranjeevi there. It'll make his resume look good.. that's about it!.. Are we going to claim that 'Stalin' will make loads of money being dubbed into tamil and malayalam.. that would be a real streeeeeeeeetch of the imagination!..

 
At 10:51 AM, Blogger Filbert said...

Though I have completely enjoyed all of Dharani's movies, we all could see that Dharani was running out of ideas, even right after Dhil. Dhool had the Dhil hangover all over it. Every scene and song in Dhool could be related a sinilar scene & song from Dhil. And Gilli was a scene-by-scene remake of Okkadu. So, his tank has been running empty and that is probably one reason why his Telugu movie flopped.

But I am happy & would welcome Dharani back to Tamil filmdom, bcos it is directors like Dharani who can seriously give someone like Perarasu a run for his money.

 
At 11:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

filbert, I remember BB quipping that Dhooll could be called a "classy" movie when compared to Thirupathi! Yeah, Dharani could easily give our thirupathi-iyakkunar a run for his laddoo if he gets back to form.

 
At 12:54 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

sandhya, "Watch for Dharani to come back with a vengeance in Tamil" - thats exactly what i'm hoping will happen. and its not that he should never fail. but the movie was reviewed so badly that i felt sorry for him a li'l bit...

deepa, so the blog's getting too predictable?! :)
and considering that he was making it an unfamiliar language with a new cast, i'm not sure he would've been more complacent. i think the reason is that he assumed some sensibilities on the part of the telugu people and so tried to make a movie for them instead of in his own style...

prasanna, i think tamil and telugu movies r on the same level as far as movie quality goes. in fact, with movies like 'nvnv' and 'sri ramadasu', i feel they're taking more risks that we are...

ram, fully agree about mamta :)

 
At 2:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

dharani is a one trick pony and has been exposed for the hack that he is.

 
At 2:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The insertion of the thread where the villain gets ready to take 10-year old girl as wife to his brother comes as a vulgar development and throws a heavy and deliberate material to the audiences."

Sick :(

 
At 1:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sandhya,have some modesty.
Telugu industry is not depenedent on tamil film industry for anything.They already have the biggest market for a state.They can easily compete with bollywood.
You and me could have never seen an Anniyan, a Chandramukhi or Ghazini if not for the broad mindedness of the telugu audience.These are all high budget films which a tamil industry alone cannot afford.Telugu audiences accepy even a good dubbed film irrespective of the language.
Also don't think only we have talented actors.Someone like a Pavan Kalyan or a Mahesh Babu is equally talented.There is a wide variety of films(the large market helps)in telugu like for example Anand which was a quality budget film or a fully dance based film like Style or a period film like Pournami or a mythological film like Sri Ramadasudu.These kinds of films i am sure cannot be made now in tamil
Regarding more talented technicians in tamil-statistics show that in the last few year more telugu films have been remade in tamil than otherwise.

I don't see anything wrong in tamil actors and technicians working in telugu.It is surely a case of promotion.But i must say that resentment is slowly growing in andhra against tamil actors and technicians.Dasari Narayana Rao spoke about this somedays ago.He said that he,K Vishwanath and Raghavendra Rao were in Madras for more than 30 years.But they were never asked to direct a tamil film

 
At 1:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heard that after bangaran flopped as***le vijay is going to remake pokiri(which is a hit,but has nothing new).Has he not got any other better work than to shamelessly remake films

 
At 3:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

karthik sc, yaen ivlo tension aareenge...
btw, unge serious discussions elaam sandhya, BB ode vechukonge...enaku orey oru simple q-- neenge thamizha, telungaa? anaathe, romba ishtyle-aa "indian"-nu solaatheynge!

 
At 9:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am a tamilian who has spent all his life in bangalore, but i have travelled all over india because of my father's postings.my parents are currently based in hyderabad.

 
At 1:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

the reason for Tamil directors going to Telugu is very simple - the Telugu language is more widely spoken than Tamil all over the world, Tollywood is a much larger market..and offers the potential to make more money.
You might be surprised to know, but there are more Telugu movies which release in the US, than even Hindi..becoz Telugus now virtually dominate at the high tech hotspots (New Jersey, California)

 
At 11:11 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon, IMHO Tamil is more widely spoken in the world than Telugu, if you take countries like S'pore, Malaysia and SriLanka into account.

I think the reason why more Telugu films are released in the US is that Andhrai-ites are more patronizing towards their movies than Tamilians are. Most Tamilians (including myself) don't watch a movie in the theater unless there is some star value or there are good reviews (wait for BB to see it first :). Most of my Telugu friends, on the other hand, go and watch any Telugu movie that gets relesed.

 
At 6:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think that dharani is one of the best TAMIL director today, since he gave us 3 blockbusters : dhil, dhool, and .... ghillli, which helped thalapathy vijay to come back in the industry!!! dharani should come back in tamil, and should work with vikram or vijay (why not both!!) and give us another big hit!!

 
At 5:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

IMHO, both tamil and telugu industries have their own weaknesses and strengths. When we ridicule telugu industry for the kind of films they come up with, I have a question,are we any better?

We have crappy directors like perarasu who ostentasiouly try to degrade the standards of tamil films. Both his flicks Tirupachi and tirupathi were equally YUCK!. These kinda directors should be forced to work as asst directors for their life time under a Cheran or a murugadoss or a goutham. They'll then come to know what quality film making is all about. On one hand, a group of young directors like cheran are trying to elevate Kollywood, and on the other hand people like perarasu who does nt know beans about film-making ,are trying to inhibit it.

When it comes to telugu industry,Though they are predominantly masala flicks, There are quite a few directors like K.Viswanath (His salangai oli is a film I can never forget in my life!) who have always vouched for quality and finesse in their films and achieved it.

Again, The industry has its own flip side as well. I saw 'Tagore', a remake of the tamil film 'Ramana'. I was shocked to see such a good film like ramana being screwed up so badly. They added a masala tinge to it with siranjeevi dancing the hell out of it with shreya. The tamil version portrayed a decent and matured relationship between Vijaykanth and the girl(whoever that is!) but the telugu version portrayed an yet-another-run-of-the-mill lustful relationship (they actually called it 'love' in the film).

So, both industries have their own pros & cons. Its we who should encourage good films regardless of their language and discourage the bad ones, again, regardless of the language!!.

 
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At 5:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

All dharini previous movies are blockbusters of telugu movies. He just remade them into tamil.
Ex: "gilli". It is remade into tamil while original one is telugu "okkadu"

 
At 6:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And also in United States itself hit telugu movie collects around 2 or 3 crores

 

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