Actor Vijay Sethupathi has backed out from the film 800, a biopic based on the life of Sri Lankan cricketer Muttiah Muralitharan, a day after the cricketer issued a statement asking the actor to stay away from the film.
The makers of the film and Sethupathi had been facing a massive backlash ever since the film was officially announced.
Sethupathi’s publicity team confirmed to Silverscreen India that the actor will not be taking part in the project. Muralidharan’s statement was also tweeted by Vijay Sethupathi, who wrote: “Thank you and greetings.”
“I am issuing this statement after the controversies that have been raised in Tamil Nadu against my biopic 800. I know that due to some misunderstandings about me, some people have been urging actor Vijay Sethupathi to withdraw from acting in 800. Due to this, I don’t want a great artist getting affected because of me. I do not want Vijay Sethupathi to face unnecessary hurdles in the future and so I am asking him to stay away from making this movie,” Muralitharan wrote in his statement.
“I was able to reach this position only by facing all the challenges in my life and not by becoming tired. I agreed upon making a biopic on my life only because I thought that it will be an inspiration and boost willpower for the future generations and budding cricket players. However, now even that is facing challenges. I believe that these challenges will be overcome and my movie will reach them (future gen and young cricketers). With the production company assuring me that an announcement about this will come soon, I want to let them know that I will stand with them for any efforts they take. Under such circumstances, I want to thank all the media friends, political personalities, Tamil cinema industry artists, fans of Vijay Sethupathi, the public – especially the Tamil people – who have supported me,” he added.
நன்றி.. வணக்கம் 🙏🏻 pic.twitter.com/PMCPBDEgAC
— VijaySethupathi (@VijaySethuOffl) October 19, 2020
The film saw immense public outrage on social media after its motion poster was released last week. The backlash came in response to Muralidharan’s public support of the Rajapaksa government which was responsible for the genocide of the Eelam Tamil community in Sri Lanka. Popular figures from the cinema and political industry including Bharathiraja, Cheran, lyricist Thamarai, and Information and Publicity Minister Kadambur C Raju expressed their dissent to the making of the film and requested Sethupathi to avoid acting in it.
Photo Courtesy: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Photograph_of_Muttiah_Muralitharan.jpg Cropped, Resized