Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Rajni - Netru

As the Netru in the title indicates, this is the first post in 3-part article about Rajni. This post is about other movies Rajni could've acted in. The next one tackles a couple of the most common accusations thrown at Rajni. And the last post will be about what I would like to see Rajni do next (they will not be posted on consecutive days though and the next one may not be online until next week).


Rajni has acted in too few films in the past decade or so. Both Baasha and Muthu released in the same year(1995) but in the 12 years since then, he has acted in only 5 films(Arunachalam, Padaiyappa, Baba, Chandramukhi and Sivaji) with 2 or more years between films. So one of my favorite past-times in the time between those movies was to imagine what other movies would have been great vehicles for Rajni. Looking back at the movies in the last few years, here are 3 films I really wish had been made with Rajni instead.

This is a film even I didn't like much and it is the only flop on this short list. But I think the story, inspite of being a modern-day version of Kalyanaraman, had all the ingredients that go into a Rajni movie. The first half, with the hero as a scaredy-cat, would've allowed enormous opportunities to exploit Rajni's comic abilities. The flashback(which would ofcourse have had Rajni again) created a memorable, good-samaritan character along the lines of the dad in Muthu. And the second half, with Muni's ghost entering the hero's body, would've provided enough action to satisfy Rajni fans. Graphics, which our directors seem to love, would actually not seem out of place considering the storyline. In the hands of a good director, this movie could've been quite the entertainer.

I feel no other director can showcase an actor's macho image as well as Dharani does and that would have come in real handy in a Rajni film. Dhool is a fantastic entertainer with action, romance, comedy and sentiments in the right proportion and that naturally makes it an ideal Rajni movie (the Madurai Veeran... song alone would've been enough to drive the Rajni fans delirious). The film had a politician as the villain, which would allow Rajni to spout some politics-tinged dialogs. And as an added bonus, the film would've paired Rajni with Jo :-) Ofcourse the glamour quotient vis-a-vis Reema Sen would have had to be toned down to make it a family-friendly film - a key criterion for a Rajni film.

This one's a no-brainer. A project that Shankar himself admitted he had prepared with Rajni in mind, the actor passed on it since he thought the story was too sensitive considering his political affiliations at that time. But the role would have fit Rajni like a glove. The one-day CM concept with all those radical acts would have been a perfect match for Rajni's do-gooder image. The scenes from Sivaji where Rajni implements his plans in the villages(the ambidextrous signing, the slow-mo walks, etc.) were proof of just how stylishly Shankar would have presented Rajni in the scenes where he sets things right. And if Rajni does get into politics, the Mudhalvane... number would have served as the perfect theme song :-)


At 10:16 PM, Blogger Srivatsan Sridharan said...


One of my friend (superstar fan) commented that Mudhalvan would have hit an year in good city theatres had Rajini taken up, in fact it would have been bigger than Chandramukhi

Just imagine the interview scene with Superstar and his best foe in cinema Raghuvaran :)

would've paired Rajni with Jo
, I'm sad it never happened :(

At 10:36 PM, Blogger oLi said...

Nice thought. Other movies that came to my mind with whatever thought I could muster at 2:00 in the night:

Sami, Dhil, Gilli (a younger Rajini would be perfect), Thirumalai.

Basically any action Vikram or Vijay movie would have been good.

Looking forward to your second and third posts of the series. I've been thinking what Rajini would do next...should be interesting to see what you think.

At 12:14 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some of the movies that comes to my mind are:
1. Samy - would have been a blockbuster
2. Gemini - a perfect fit and rajini hasn't done this kind of role.
3. Varalaru - Infact KSR has approached Rajini.
4. Kaakha Kaakha - if picturised more stylish with his fast moves
5. Mudhalvan - ofcourse its a full and full Rajini story
6. A full lenghth comedy movie -- nothing comes to mind on this.

At 12:16 AM, Blogger The Ink Blot said...

Most actors today think they can be Rajini anyway, so most action comedies today end up looking like Rajini movies (with a wannabe Rajini instead of the real thing)... Vijay, Vijayakanth, Simbu...

At 12:20 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

a full length comedy movie - Imsai Arasan 23m Pulikesi -- directed by shankar with a title change

At 12:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Next, Rajini can do a rough and tough village subject probably with ameer's direction which can bring another face of Rajini

At 1:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wanna see Rajini act as villain again. I've always felt Rajini was much effective as a villain rather than a hero. I may forget Manikam (Baasha), Muthu (Muthu) or Saravanan (C'mukhi)...but I can never forget Parratai (at the age of 16) or Ramanathan (Avarghal) or Vetaiyya Raja.

Idhu eppadi irruku...Lakakakaka :D


At 2:11 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

//Ofcourse the glamour quotient vis-a-vis Reema Sen would have had to be toned down to make it a family-friendly film - a key criterion for a Rajni film.//

1. Reema Sen's glamour was nothing infront of Shreya's cleavage exposure in Sivaji.

2. Chandramukhi has Rajini in a double meaning joke

So, these are family-friendly scenes??

At 5:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Balaji:

Like I always say in all my posts, if Rajini acted in "Mudhalvan", it would have been the BEST of RAJINI & SHANKAR - Unlike the spoof called Sivaji! What a waste!

Also, Anonymous - Varalaru (Godfather) was supposed to be done by Kamal (not Rajini as you said) but instead of that Kamal did "Thenali"!

At 5:52 AM, Blogger Karthik Sriram said...

Good one balaji...

Mudhalvan - no questions - it was rajni movie out and out - but sadly...

I thought Rajni would have suited varalaaru too - without the dancing scens - they could have just shown rajni walkning and talking - not dancing...

At 6:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


At the time of making CM, Rajini has expressed willing to act in varalaru. But after that Sivaji came and KSR roped in Ajith.

Even RAjini has said that he has missed a nice script while seeing the Preview show of Varalaru

At 7:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Varalaaru? Rajni shown as a 9 could get KSR killed :-) Plus the movie was nothing special and benefitted a little only from Ajith. I think movies whose scripts are already strong and would be even more enhanced by Rajni's presence are the best choices. That way, Mudhalvan would have been great. Iam not sure about anything else. Muni after Chandramukhi would have been slightly redundant with the ghost theme and all.Other successful masalas of recent times have nothing unique in their scripts that Rajni has'nt done before or flat out not suitable for Rajni(kaaka kaakka? Gemini? Pleaase :-) ) That said, Dharani is a choice Rajni has to consider seriously if he is still going to go the masala route in his next film. Not KSR once again please

At 10:07 AM, Blogger Filbert said...

Awesome series, Balaji.

I have always thought Hari to be a perfect director for typical Thalaivar style movies. Hope you know that Ayyah was written with Thalaivar in mind. That was one movie which I thought would have suited Thalaivar well. Another movie that readily comes to my mind - Marumalarchi. Thalaivar was approached for that movie but for some reason, he turned it down. I wish Thalaivar had done that movie.

Already looking forward to your 2nd and 3rd parts of the series. Bcos as a die-hard Thalaivar fan, I am myself torn between what kind of roles that Thalaivar should do post-Sivaji.

At 4:32 PM, Blogger D.E.V said...

Rajni should have done "Ramanna" as it is perfect for his image. The story would have suited Rajni well. The political dialogs he uttered would have gone well with his fans. Only thing they have to change the ending kepping Rajni's image in mind.

Another film came in mind is "Thirupachi". The masses would surely love Rajni in this role. KS Ravikumar as the director would surely come up with an ideal masala fare.

At 7:18 PM, Blogger Srivatsan Sridharan said...

Varalaru for superstar, thalaiva idhu ellam konjam over :-), BTW Ajith did a good job, honestly superstar would have spoiled it.

May be Dharani is the director for Rajini (Masalas packed nicely). I feel the same for both Superstar and Vijay little/slight deviation from Masalas could be a disaster in BO.

It is pretty surprising when Vijay announced ATM (next film) that he is going to take up double role (first time!).This guy has been in the Industry for like 10-15 yrs with out even getting out of comfort zone :)

At 8:22 PM, Blogger Balaji said...

oli, was kinda thinking about rajni acting in the film when it came out. so gilli, etc. would be out since rajni would have to be younger. but 'samy' would've been awesome esp. since rajni hasn't played a cop for so long :)

RS, he appeared for some time in both CM and 'sivaji' in roles with shades of gray. so maybe he realized his effectiveness as villain too :)

sundar, i didn't say those were family-friendly. i mentioned in my review that shreya should've been clothed more. and those CM dialogs could've been avoided. just that i felt the scenes with reema in 'dhool' far exceeded those scenes u mention as far as family- unfriendliness goes :)

vijay, "scripts are already strong and would be even more enhanced by Rajni's presence" - well-put as always. that should guide his next movie. more in 3rd post :)

filbert, knew u'd like it :) yes i remember 'ayya' was written with rajni in mind. didnt know about 'marumalarchi' though. after 'aaru' i dislike hari so much that i can't think of he making a good thalaivar movie.

skanda, yes i agree about 'ramana'. but not so sure about 'tiruppaachi'. too much violence :)

At 9:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


The original version of Dhool was nice and I don't think Rajini suits the role since the hero is shown 2b macho. And most of the funny scenes like schoolboy Vikram watching blue film in theatre wouldn't be there if Rajini was to act.

At 10:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree that KSR approached kamal for Varalaaru first ! But after that he did approach Rajini with that script. Rajini didn't reject it but he went on to act in Chandramukhi. :) (May be he might have been hesistant to act in that role like kamal)

At 1:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Haven't seen MUDHALVAN though I do remember reading that it was written for Rajni. Heck he wanted Amitabh for the Hindi version, but ended up making it with Anil kapoor titled NAYAK. Movie flopped in Hindi though I really likedit-both Anil and Amrish were excellent here after VIRASAT(itself a remake of THEVAR MAGAN)!

Agree on Dharani, the few films I've seen I've liked, and he is ace with masala and macho men!



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