Actor Kamal Haasan, who will next be seen in Vikram after a four-year hiatus from the big screen, revealed that the film is derived from a line he wrote for his 1986 movie of the same name. The actor-producer-politician divulged this at a press meet in Chennai on Wednesday, ahead of Vikram’s release on June 3.
Vikram also stars Vijay Sethupathi, Fahadh Faasil, Suriya (in a cameo appearance), Narain, Gayathrie, Kalidas Jayaram, Shivani Narayanan, and Arjun Das among others. The anticipation for it has been increasing among the audience with the trailer hinting at connections to Lokesh’s previous film Kaithi and the upcoming movie also appearing to bear similarities to Haasan’s own 1986 Tamil spy action film Vikram.
Speaking at the media event on Wednesday, Haasan said, “It was Lokesh’s idea to use the same title (Vikram). He is fond of many of my past films and could have chosen any of those names. However, he picked this. I had a line for the original film, but Rajasekhar (director of the 1986 movie) thought the idea was way ahead of its time. We then went with another story. I spoke about this line with Lokesh and he liked it. This film is carved out of that line.”
The actor also said that there might be a sequel to the 2022 film and affirmed that, in case it happens, Lokesh will helm it too.
While on the topic of sequels, Haasan also gave an update on his long-pending Indian 2 project with Shankar, which has been delayed due to legal issues. The actor said that it will definitely happen and that talks for it are currently on.
Further, Haasan addressed the controversy surrounding the lyrics of a song in Vikram that he wrote and lent his voice to. The song, Pathala Pathala, has been criticised for certain lines that appear to mock the Union government of India and take a dig at the state of the Indian treasury. However, Haasan said that the word ‘union’ has multiple meanings. “There are unions in cinema as well and if something goes wrong with them, a film might get affected. It can be taken like that as well,” he noted, and added that one has to watch the movie to understand the meaning of the lyrics.
On the current trend of pan-Indian films, Haasan opined, “Pan-Indian films are not new. Satyajit Ray’s films were also pan-Indian films. Vikram is also a pan-Indian film that can be an introduction for outsiders who have certain ideas about Indian films.”
When asked about Tamil films not entering the 1000-crore club, like those from the Telugu and Kannada industries, such as RRR and KGF, Haasan said, “There has been a period when Tamil cinema was at its peak and films from the language were remade across the country.”
Haasan also spoke about his rapport with late DMK chief M Karunanidhi. Vikram is notably set to release on the birth anniversary of the former Tamil Nadu chief minister. “When I began to write screenplays, I used to meet him often. While writing Dasavathaaram (2008), I met with him for suggestions. Even in the midst of his busy schedule, he used to meet me with eagerness. He would advise me to write more quickly and also said that it is a special talent to write for cinema. That stuck with me. Kalaignar Karunanidhi has contributed immensely to my writing,” Haasan said.
However, the actor added that the upcoming film arriving on Karunanidhi’s birth anniversary was simply a coincidence. “We had initially planned for a May 29 release, since that was the date the original Vikram released. However, due to the pandemic and other issues, we’ve now chosen this date.”