Tamil News

Under Fire For Calling Kabali A Failure, Vairamuthu Says He Misspoke

Vairamuthu, KB Statue

Last Sunday at a Lion’s Club event, lyricist Vairamuthu controversially called Rajinikanth’s Kabali a failure. While Vairamuthu now says he misspoke because he was emotional, the comment has already upset and angered fans. Kabali‘s producer Kalaipuli S Thanu said Vairamuthu was being “venomous” because he hadn’t been allowed to write the lyrics. Meanwhile, Vairamuthu is also being accused of casteism, as Kabali‘s director Pa Ranjith is a dalit.


Vairamuthu issued a press release on Tuesday to clarify that he never meant to call Kabali a failure. He says, “I couldn’t catch the right words. I meant to say it is hard to understand Kabali‘s success or failure, and I left the word ‘success’ out inadvertently.” 


At the event, Vairamuthu had said, “Though Kabali‘s failure can’t be accepted, it needs to be understood.” Further, Accepting something is not the same as understanding it. Even if I don’t accept God, I understand the need for him. Similarly, I said even if we cannot accept men, women, relationships, lost airplanes, and Kabali‘s failure, we have to understand.” 


However, an angry Kalaipuli S Thanu responded,”I know why he is angry. If we had let him write for the movie, he would have praised it to the skies. Because we didn’t, he is critical of the movie.”

Thanu added that Vairamuthu had asked him for a chance to write the lyrics for Sachin and Thuppakki. “We were not in a position to let him write lyrics for SachinLater when I produced Thuppaki, he asked again, and we couldn’t. Now, he is being venomous in his criticism of Kabali

Thanu further said, “The same man that says Kabali is a flop, got 4000 tickets from me for the movie on day one. I didn’t charge him a single paisa. No one has been able to stop Kabali‘s success. It is a massive, historical hit.”


Writer and DMK party speaker Manushya Puthiran has come out in support of Vairamuthu. Manushya Puthiran said, “This state once let us oppose God, but looks like we are not allowed to oppose Kabali now.” Further, “Why is there so much criticism of Vairamuthu for saying Kabali was a flop? And why are you attributing these comments to his casteism?


According to Vairamuthu, however, there is no controversy. In the press release, Vairamuthu says, “My heart is pure. My intent was not to hurt the industry I belong to, or the man that I respect, Rajinikanth.” Further, “When he [Rajini] arrived in Chennai, I called him to explain this and he said, “That’s what I heard too.” Our friendship is strong. Please don’t make this into a controversy.


Vairamuthu, who began his career with Nizhagal in 1980, has written lyrics for over 5,000 songs and won the National Award six times.

Kabali, directed by Pa Ranjith, and starring Rajinikanth, Radhika Apte, and Sai Dhansika, is about an ageing gangster. The film has done well at the box-office, and had mixed reviews from critics.