Director Julien Prakash has said that he will protect the bull-fighting sport Jallikattu with his life, if necessary. The director is making his debut with the period drama Ilami, and has been vocal about his beliefs on Jallikattu. The film is set in 1700 against the backdrop of the sport.
Julien said that he would do “anything” to protect Jallikattu because Tamil culture itself was at stake, “Vadam Jallikattu is a test of bravery. It is part of our tradition and must be preserved at all costs. Right now, there are no bulls that have been specifically trained for the sport. If this continues for five more years, our culture and tradition will be completely wiped away.”
According to him, Ilami will show life as it was in the 18th century Tamil Nadu. The team hopes that the movie will help in raising awareness about the issue. “A lot of families depend on this for their livelihood. Taking this away from them will only lead to more instance of poverty,” Prakash told Silverscreen.
Prakash also said that Tamil men and women must unite to make sure our traditions are preserved for the future. “Else, our culture will be wiped away. We must be careful.”
The bull-fighting sport was outlawed by the Supreme Court in 2014. The court upheld the ban earlier this year. The issue has been a source of contention for lovers of the sport who say that the ban does not take into account its cultural importance.
Several Tamil film stars, including Dhanush, have voiced their support for the sport in the past.