Following last week’s string of dull releases, with only Jab Harry Met Sejal being a crowd-puller, this weekend has a refreshing lineup of six new films. After months of waiting, director Ram’s Taramani is finally releasing without any difficulties – despite the potshots at the Censor Board on their posters. Meanwhile, VIP 2 was scheduled to release on Dhanush’s birthday last month, but after delays, it releases this week, and will be a tough contender at the box-office.
Here’s a quick look at the six major releases on August 11.
Toilet – Ek Prem Katha
Starring Akshay Kumar and Bhumi Pednekar, the film is about a revolutionary husband who builds toilets for women in his village. It’s also about the shame and danger associated with open defecation, and the need for better toilet facilities, especially for women.
The film’s writers – Siddharth Singh and Garima Wahal – faced plagiarism accusations from three different people.
Jaipur-based filmmaker, Pratik Sharma alleged that the makers had lifted the punchline and the subject from his film Gutrun Gutar Gun.
Last month, documentary filmmaker Praveen Vyas sent a legal notice to the distribution company Viacom 18 Motion Pictures, alleging that several dialogues and moments in the film were directly lifted from his documentary, Manini.
The makers received another notice from a Rajasthan-based filmmaker who claimed that the song “Hans Mat Pagli” was copied from a song in his film, Ladli.
Toilet – Ek Prem Katha has music composed by Vickey Prasad, Manas-Shikhar and Sachet-Parampara. The film also stars Anupam Kher, Sana Khan, Divyendu Sharma, and Sudhir Pandey in supporting roles.
Velaiyilla Pattathari 2
VIP 2 marks the return of two women – Soundarya Rajinikanth as a director and Kajol as a Tamil actress, albeit the latter’s return is 20 years due. The film follows the the next phase in Raghuvaran’s life – his marriage, and how he has grown over the years.
The film stars Dhanush, Kajol, Amala Paul, Samuthirakani, Vivek, and Saranya Ponvannan.
While the story sounds like a battle between a man and a woman, the director tells Silverscreen that it’s about a clash of ideologies, not sexes.
“The hero himself speaks very highly of women. I think that way, VIP2 will show how equal in footing each character is, because we have a woman who is so confident and doesn’t give in, and stands strong,” says Soundarya.
The sequel has music by Sean Roldan, and is bankrolled by Dhanush and Kalaipuli S Thanu.
Starring Andrea Jeremiah, Vasanth Ravi, and Anjali, Taramani began production in 2013 and has been subjected to various postponements ever since. It explores romance in a contemporary, urban setting.
Now, three quirky teasers later, it’s finally hitting the screens.
Recently, it was given an ‘A’ certificate by the censor board. The makers chose to make tongue-in-cheek jabs at the certifying authority on their recent posters. Without revealing what led to the ‘A’ certificate, the posters of the film sarcastically call out the censor board’s double standards.
Meanwhile, in an interview with Silverscreen, director Ram said women were becoming more self-reliant and Taramani explored that theme. “Globalisation created a liberal space for women to express themselves. It gave them an identity, beyond the usual tags of mother, sister, wife and daughter…However, are the men who live and work with them able to understand the change? That’s one of the questions Taramani deals with,” he said.
The film has music composed by Yuvan Shankar Raja. Ram is co-producing it under Catamaran Productions, along with J Satish Kumar.
Podhuvaga Em Manasu Thangam
Billed as a comedy thriller, Podhuvaga Em Manasu Thangam stars Udhayanidhi Stalin, Nivetha Pethuraj, R Parthiepan, Soori, and Mayilsamy.
Soori plays the quintessential comedian, while Parthiepan plays the father of the actress, as well as a villain.
D Imman, known for composing several other rural entertainers, composes for this one too. The film is bankrolled by Sri Thenandal Films.
Nene Raju Nene Mantri
Starring Rana Daggubati, Kajal Aggarwal, and Catherine Tresa in the lead roles, Nene Raju Nene Mantri (Naan Aanaiyitaal in Tamil) is directed by Teja. The Tamil title is an allusion to MGR’s Enge Veetu Pillai (1963), which is also coincidentally the first film produced by Rana’s grandfather, D Ramanaidu.
He said, “The love for his wife is so much that he puts his wife’s name before his. He calls himself ‘Radha Jogendra’. So in the madness of him wanting more power, he turns bad. Sometimes a good man can turn bad, because of society around him taunting him. The idea for him is to become a Chief Minister. There’s politics, there is action, and money. But the focus is on the love story between a husband and wife.”
A fictional take on a political scenario, the film is a commercial one but has been directed like an art film.
Nene Raju Nene Mantri is produced by Suresh Daggubati, CH Bharath Chowdhary and V Kiran Reddy under Suresh Productions and Blue Planet Entertainments.
E – The Movie
E marks Gautami Tadimala’s return to Malayalam cinema. The film is about how a mysterious event from the past comes to haunt Malathi Menon (Gautami) and reveal a hidden secret. The film stars mostly newcomers.
Speaking at a Facebook chat live event, the actress said that the film is about human relationships – such as a mother’s love for her child, friendship, the beginning of a relationship, and the end of a relationship.
The film has music by Rahul Raj and is being bankrolled by Amin Surani and Sangeeth Sivan production. Directed by Kukku Surendran, E is based on writer Rohan Bajaj’s novel, The Unknown.