Fresh legal trouble brews for ‘Indian 2’ over the use of ‘Varma Kalai’

The petitioner claimed that the makers of 'Indian 2' used the 'Varma Kalai' techniques without obtaining his permission.

BySouth First Desk

Published Jul 10, 2024 | 4:53 PM Updated Jul 10, 2024 | 4:56 PM

Indian 2 lands in legal trouble

Ahead of its worldwide release on 12 July, Kamal Haasan’s Indian 2 landed in legal trouble. A plea filed in the Madurai District Court sought a ban on the film’s release.

The petition was submitted by ‘Aasan’ Rajendran, the chief instructor of Varma Kalai, based in Madurai. He mentioned that Kamal Haasan consulted him for Varma Kalai techniques during the production of Indian (1996) and his contributions were duly recognised back then.

However, he claimed that Indian 2 makers used these techniques without obtaining his permission. Now, Rajendran requested a ban on the film’s release in theatres and on OTT platforms alike.

During the hearing on 8 July, the court postponed the proceedings to 11 July, as the film’s crew requested more time to respond to Rajendran’s petition.

Related: Siddharth speaks about Kamal Haasan, Shankar and ‘Indian 2’

Shankar’s clarification on Varma Kalai

In an interview, director Shankar mentioned that for Indian 2, makers sought expert advice on Varma Kalai techniques from Prakasam Gurukkal. He added that they specifically brought Gurukkal from Kerala to offer expert guidance, shaping the film with a unique Varmam style.

The original 1996 film featured Manisha Koirala, Urmila Matondkar, Sukanya, Nedumudi Venu, Manorama, Goundamani, and Senthil.

Shankar initially aimed to cast Aishwarya Rai as the female lead. But due to her prior commitments, she couldn’t join the film. As a result, the director proceeded with Manisha Koirala, impressed by her notable performance in Bombay (1995).

In Indian 2, Kamal Haasan reprises his role as Senapathy, a freedom fighter-turned-vigilante fighting against corruption.

The cast also includes Siddharth, SJ Suryah, Rakul Preet Singh, Bobby Simha, Priya Bhavani Shankar, Gulshan Grover, Samuthirakani, Delhi Ganesh, Vivekh, Manobala, and Nedumudi Venu.

The much-awaited trailer of Indian 2 was released on 25 June, while the makers also organised a special screening in Chennai. It received a mixed response, with many fans feeling it gave an outdated impression.

Furthermore, Anirudh Ravichander’s music was widely criticised, especially in comparison to AR Rahman’s compositions for the original film.

Indian 2 is co-produced by Lyca Productions and Red Giant Movies.

(Edited by Y Krishna Jyothi)

(South First is now on WhatsApp and Telegram)

Related: Shankar on why he chose Anirudh over AR Rahman for ‘Indian 2’