Superstar Rajinikanth is back home in Chennai after his Himalayan pilgrimage. There are rumours that he will launch his political party with a name and a flag on 14 April, time with the Tamil New Year. But the question haunting Thalaivar fans is whether his eagerly awaited Pa.Ranjith directed Kaala will release, as announced by its producer Dhanush, on 27 April?
The standoff in Kollywood between Tamil Film Producers Council (TFPC) and Digital Service Providers (DSP) continues along with 90 percent of screens in Tamil Nadu being closed. There have been no new Tamil releases from 1 March due to the ongoing tussle within the industry, and shooting and post-production work has also come to a standstill. The TFPC has made it clear that once the strike is over, new films will release as per the date of their censor certificate. It means films which were censored earlier and ready for release will get priority.
Kaala is yet to be censored and the certification process will start after the Kollywood strike is withdrawn as per TFPC guidelines. At the time of the first look of the film, producer Dhanush had tweeted – “Mark the date – Kaala April 27, the don of dons is back #Superstar #thailaivar”.
Infact, other major releases in south India had made way for Rajinikanth Kaala, with Mahesh Babu’s Bharat Ane Nenu advancing its release date from 27 April to 20 April. And Allu Arjun’s Naa Peru Surya postponing its release date by a week from 27 April to 4 May.
The business and area wise sale of Kaala is yet to start, and buyers will come in only once the strike period is over and the film is censored. Rajinikanth’s last release Kabali took time to get censored and its release date had to be pushed. The co-producers of the film are Lyca Productions, the producers of the other Rajinikanth film 2 Point O, and they have a few other films in their kitty.
However, with Rajinikanth likely to announce the name of his political party soon, Kaala will be seen as the first film after his big ticket entry into Tamil Nadu politics. The opposition parties are keenly watching these developments.
Meanwhile, there have been several rumours of Kaala being postponed due to the ongoing strike in Kollywood. TFPC secretary SS Durairaj, in an interview, said that the producers of Kaala assured them that they will release the film only when TFPC wants it to release. This irked the producers who immediately tweeted –“ @LycaProductions has not conveyed anything to anyone regarding #Kaalarelease date. We are not responsible for any statements arising on release date speculations.”
Rajinikanth and producers of Kaala cannot afford to miss the big summer date of 27 April, as the next possible date is Ramzan (13 June) which is already overcrowded. As of now, Lyca Production has lined up Rajinikanth’s 2 Point O as an Independence Day release for 15 August. The buzz is that “special permission” or priority will have to be given by TFPC to release Kaala on 27 April. The Tamil Nadu Theatres Association also wants Kaala to be given “tatkal clearance” for a 27 April release to “bring back audiences to the theatres after the strike is over”.