Superstars of bygone era still pack a punch

Superstars of bygone era still pack a punch
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Superstars of bygone era still pack a punch

Highlights

70-year-old Rajinikanth and 66-year- old Chiranjeevi, the two trendsetters of southern cinema may be undergoing a rough time at the box-office right now with their last two releases ‘Annatthe’ and ‘Acharya’ failing to impress their die-hard fans.

70-year-old Rajinikanth and 66-year- old Chiranjeevi, the two trendsetters of southern cinema may be undergoing a rough time at the box-office right now with their last two releases 'Annatthe' and 'Acharya' failing to impress their die-hard fans. Yet for the consistently cine crazy crowd in the five states of the peninsula, old is still gold for sure.

Look at the phenomenal, blockbuster response to the 67- year-old Kamal Haasan's Tamil film ' Vikram' all across the world, including the upcountry Hindi film market. Currently estimated to have earned a whopping Rs 450 crore and still raking in the big bucks, even after a month after its theatrical release, this action flick is the kind of a film a youngster, weaned on violent video games, non-stop fighting and gun fire would devour with relish. Led by Kamal, the renowned icon of Indian cinema and having two mercurial performers in the form of Fahadh Faasil and Vijay Sethupathi to up both the curiosity and appeal quotients, the film, a pure slam bang stuff steered clear of mandatory box- office demands like a dumbo bimbo heroine and/or item numbers to raise the temperature levels of the crowd. Yet, the film continues to draw in the family crowds, all over the world, where it is running successfully into its fifth week.

The 'Universal Actor' as Haasan is popularly known in the film circuit, has always exhibited a street smart attitude towards film production, especially when he has to shell out the money for the project. His recent production, helmed by the successful young film director Lokesh Kanagaraj has been hailed for its fabulous reach and optimal cost, bringing in currency for its buyers by the bag full all over the world.

It has smashed many records in Tamil cinema which has entertained viewers all around the world for more than eight decades now, including the one for being the top grosser ever in Tamil cinema, beating 'Baahubali 2' released five years ago, dubbed into the local language. Including his remuneration, Haasan is reported to have pocketed a cool Rs 170 crore as his earnings, both as the producer and hero of the film. This figure is much more than what the modern day stars earn in the local cinema industries.

While Rajini is gearing up to reclaim his lost throne with his forthcoming 'Jailer' to be directed by Nelson Dilipkumar, which is likely to have Kannada supremo Shiva Rajkumar also playing a pivotal role, action in the other film industries which has 60+ stars still refusing to call it quits is also worthy to note.

61-year-old 'Victory' Venkatesh, who entered the OTT space during the pandemic with his remade films 'Narappa' and later ' Drusyam 2' had a successful release 'F3: Fun and Frustration' which gave him the bragging rights to have continued with a sequel of his earlier F2, released three years ago. Ditto with Balayya, who had a massive hit with ' Akhanda' earlier in 2022 and now is busy with his NBK 107 which would have Shruti Hassan pairing alongside him for the first time.

A dated script and predictable narrative killed the success potential of ' Acharya' despite a huge media hype and a casting coup comprising both the father and son – Chiranjeevi and Ram Charan. Still the megastar is refusing to call it a day as he has a few more projects lined up, which includes a remake from Malayalam and Tamil cinema. Shruti Haasan is likely to be paired along with him in his unnamed Mega 154 too, making her the favourite pair of senior citizen stars at present.

Nagarjuna tasted success with his ' Bangarraju' and as of present, has no venture announced and progressing on the floors. Yet, he too has kept himself in public eye even as his two sons are slowly making the tortuous climb to the upper echelons of the industry. Malayalam cinema is still firmly under the grip of the top two veterans – Mammootty and Mohanlal – who have films releasing at regular intervals and competing fiercely at the box office. The former continued his successful run with his latest release 'CBI 5 : The Brain', the fifth sequel to the first one released in 1988 starring the same hero. Mohanlal, who had two hits in 2022 is busy with at least five more which will keep him busy and visible till end 2023.

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