The Tamil actor Simbu has apparently put in place certain conditions for shoots that have left his producers fuming. Among them are:
- He will shoot for only five hours a day, and of his choosing.
- He will not do night shoots.
- He will work only from Monday to Friday, even if the film is being shot in an outstation location.
- He will do only profile and straight shots and will not do back or over-the-shoulder shots.
A highly placed source in the Tamil Film Producers Council said that most of these conditions were placed mid-way during shoot, forcing the producers to take action against the actor. It did not help that many of them had already paid an advance which was not returned, or adjusted against the shoot. And so, last week, a few producers got together and headed to their parent body TFPC. Their one agenda: Filing a complaint against actor Simbu alias STR, for taking money and not turning up for their film shoot. Among them were KE Gnanavel Raja of Studio Green (his remake of the Kannada film Mufti with Gautham Karthik was supposed to be Simbu’s 45th film), Vijay Raghavendra of All In Pictures (Vinnai Thaandi Varuvaaya 2) and Suresh Kamatchi (Maanadu), Thendanal Films, Michael Rayappan (who produced Simbu’s AAA, which was patched together after the actor delayed it inordinately and flopped at the box office) and Escape Artists’ Madan.
The industry generally shies away from making anything public, and likes to settle disputes through mediation. That was unsuccessful in this case, because “Simbu and his family are not interested in co-operating or sitting on the table to discuss issues.” It is said that Venkat Prabhu pulled the plug on Maanaadu, thanks to these conditions. Though luckily for him, this happened before the shoot began.
The producers’ grouses were many. Vijay has reportedly paid an advance of Rs. 2 crore, and claims he has not been able to get Simbu to shoot for two years. Gnanavel’s film is half-done and Simbu has allegedly put out a list of conditions that might make one laugh, but for the fact that crores ride on his decision. Suresh put out a statement a fortnight ago stating that he was making Maanadu with a new hero, because of indefinite delays.
Meanwhile, reports said that producers filed a complaint of cheating against Silambarasan aka Simbu at the Chennai Police Commissioner’s office and TFPC because he signed an agreement for these films and did not turn up for shooting. The reports added that Simbu, who is currently in Thailand, might be deported if the cops act on the complaint, but this could not be independently verified.
Simbu signed up for director Narthan’s remake of the Kannada film Mufti co-starring Gautham Karthik, and is believed to have left to Thailand mid-way through the shoot. He’s not responding to calls by the film’s producer Gananavel Raja, we hear. The shoot for the film began in April this year.
After being dropped from Maanaadu (following which he announced Mahamanaadu and later considered getting back to Maanaadu when the news did not go well with his fans), Simbu is also delaying the Vinnaithaandi Varuvaaya sequel. Vijay Raghavendra, whose company paid Simbu Rs 2 crore as salary for Vinnaithaandi Varuvaaya 2, has been waiting for the actor to turn up for two years. Last year, it was said that Madhavan would reprise Simbu’s role in the sequel. But, d