Nobody knows why and how it happened; but the big news doing rounds in Kollywood is that ace director Maniratnam has abandoned his upcoming film ‘Ponniyin Selvan’ based on the epic novel penned by the late and legendary author Kalki. The film, about the Chola dynasty, was to star Vijay, Mahesh Babu, Aarya, Anushka and Bollywood’s Priyanka Chopra.
The celluloid version of the said novel was attempted and abandoned by the late MGR and then by Kamal Hassan for a variety of reasons. When news of Maniratnam’s attempt came through, many were apprehensive as to how the ‘legendary novel’ would be treated by Maniratnam, known for his SMS-style of short dialogues. Sathyaraj was also said to be all set to play a significant role in the film.
Query with many in Bollywood threw some ‘light’ on why the film was finally abandoned. It turns out that Maniratnam decided to ‘drop’ the project at the behest of the advice he got from none other than A.R Rahman, the music wizard, who has teamed up with Maniratnam in many successful films in the past. A.R Rahman was said to be little apprehensive of the many ‘historical/period-type film’s that are made in Hindi and various other languages.
A.R Rahman is said to have told the ace director that too many of such stories might just kill the public’s interest in such films and asked him to make a love story like ‘Alaipayuthae’ and offered him 4-5 ready-made tunes that he had in his custody. Maniratnam liked them so much so that he promised A.R Rahman that he would return with a ‘romantic’ script which could make use of all those amazing tunes that the musician had in his hands!