Filmmakers and studios in the south have caught on to the formula of adding a big north Indian star to their cast, like an Akshay Kumar alongside Rajinikanth in 2.0 and releasing the movie in multiple languages
NEW DELHI: Baahubali star Prabhas who is slated to feature in a mythological historical drama called Adipurush has announced that Bollywood actor Kriti Sanon will join him in the film, adding to the trend of northern and southern faces teaming up for big-budget spectacles.
Apart with Sanon, actor Sunny Singh, known for films like Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety will also feature in the film which Saif Ali Khan was already slated to play the antagonist in.
To be sure, the covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the shift of specific language industries eyeing pan-Indian audiences beyond. Made on budgets of more than Rs200 crore each, these will be shot in multiple languages including Hindi, Tamil and Telugu, among others, and feature a mix of Bollywood and south Indian faces to draw on fan bases across states and geographies.
Apart from Adipurush, Baahubali director SS Rajamouli has Ajay Devgn and Alia Bhatt starring alongside Jr NTR and Ram Charan in his upcoming movie RRR while Deepika Padukone and Amitabh Bachchan will be seen with Prabhas in a film bankrolled by Telugu production house Vyjayanthi Movies.
“Everyone has realised post the pandemic that the big screen experience matters a lot," film trade and exhibition expert Girish Johar said in an earlier interview to Mint. Be it Baahubali, Saaho or Hollywood spectacles like Avengers: Endgame, audiences know that the thrill of watching a big-ticket, larger-than-life experience is unmatched, even though OTT (over-the-top) streaming platforms have thrown up compelling content consistently. Further, filmmakers and studios in the south have caught on to the formula of adding a big north Indian star to their cast, like an Akshay Kumar alongside Rajinikanth in 2.0 and releasing the movie in multiple languages, Johar pointed out.
“That discovery probably happened because there are more film fanatics in the south, movie-viewing is like a religion there and they enjoy the big screen experience much more," Johar added. Plus, bringing multiple language stars together just expands the market for an individual film, makes it more viable and adds to revenue sources like satellite, digital, music and merchandise rights.