When Sanjay Leela Bhansali couldn't save his own production

Malaal Movie
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Malaal Movie

Highlights

Selvaraghavan or Sri Raghava for his Telugu fans was a rage in the first years of the new millennium

Selvaraghavan or Sri Raghava for his Telugu fans was a rage in the first years of the new millennium. His launch film with his younger brother Dhanush in Tamil gave him a great slot among the top names of southern cinema. In 2004, his venture '7 G Rainbow Colony' which was partially shot in Telugu as '7 G Brundavan Colony' was a major hit giving him an equally enviable status in Telugu film industry too. The songs of Yuvan Shankar Raja are still a rage among the film music lovers of India as it had a great orchestration, the requisite pathos and memorable lyrics. At the age of 25, it was no wonder that Yuvan, the younger son of maestro Ilaiyaraja won the Best Music Director Award from Filmfare.

15 years after the original made waves, a team of producers comprising Sanjay Leela Bhansali and the music house T-series bosses decided to remake it in Hindi. Titled 'Malaal' it had the handsome son of Javed Jaffrey Meezaan and another debutante Sharmin Segal making their debuts. This was the one thing similar with the southern film in which the hero Jyothi Krishna also made a grand entry into Tamil cinema and also won a Filmfare Award for the Best Male Debut – South for his performance.

The Hindi film, released in 2019, was directed by Mangesh Hadawale, known more for Marathi films, where he had a few hits to his credit. The film certainly had a universal appeal in its favour, pitching itself firmly in the romantic drama genre and basing itself on the theme of unrequited love of a boy. This, by itself, was enough to retain many wannabe romantics and it did so, all across the southern peninsula.

Coming over to Hindi, despite critics hailing it as ' simmering love story' and a film with ' romantic and intense moments', it ended as a disaster at the box-office. Interestingly, the film had a musical score by Sanjay Leela Bhansali and 'the old-fashioned love story' as one reviewer termed it may have made Bhansali take up the baton all by himself. Very notably, an evergreen theme like romance and tragedy in love which finds great traction among the young all over did not work positively in its favour.

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