Filmmaker Mani Ratnam's magnum opus Ponniyin Selvan is set to hit the big screens on Friday. Much ahead of the release of the period drama, the film has been receiving a warm welcome. In the US, pre-bookings for the film are at record levels.
According to a Times of India report last week, over 10,000 tickets were sold out in over 200 locations. Trade analysts say that the film is expected to premiere at $1 million at the US box office.
Ponniyin Selvan, an adaptation of Kalki Krishnamoorthi's novel by the same name, is set in the period during the Chola dynasty. The first part of the film that arrives this week features a stellar cast—Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Trisha, Jayam Ravi, Vikram, Karthi, Jayaram, Prakash Raj—among others. "Even before I thought of filmmaking as a career, this book looked like a film to me. It has all the elements that make for a wide spectacle,” Mani Ratnam said in an interview recently.
Speaking about technological advancements that helped him bring Ponniyin Selvan to the big screen, he said: "If I had done this in the '80s, '90s and 2000s, we would have had to go to places where ancient civilisations existed. Today we are able to use technology and it liberates you. You are able to change architecture to fit into that period. We are able to create a reasonably realistic world.”
Backed by Ratnam's production house Madras Talkies and Allirajah Subaskaran's banner Lyca Productions, Ponniyin Selvan - I will release in Tamil, Hindi, Telugu, Kannada, and Malayalam.