Senapathy, again: The timely re-release of ‘Indian’ amidst political change

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By Sujatha Narayanan

Jun 06, 2024

Indian’s re-release could not have happened at a better time given the 2024 Lok Sabha election results that have witnessed a dissemination of dictatorial power by the people.

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While the story was inspired by the 1977 Sivaji Ganesan-starrer Naan Pirandha Mann, which featured Kamal Haasan as the errant son, Indian stood out due to its treatment and core.

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Indian touched new peaks of box-office records that even a decade after the new millennium, the Shankar-Kamal Haasan combination was touted to be the most sought-after

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The film was a big gamble for AM Ratnam who took leaps of faith to release the film with ample confidence in Kamal Haasan’s versatility and Shankar’s ability as a neophiliac.

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The gamble paid off handsomely and Indian was, perhaps, that film that also broke the myth that a “commercially successful” film can’t win a National Award.

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Indian fetched Kamal Haasan his third National Award in 1997. And the visual of him going to receive it in a silk dhoti and shirt, wearing one of his best smiles, is well remembered.

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The film and the role (Senapathy) became so iconic that Shankar and Kamal Haasan simply had to come back together to make Indian 2.

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As we wait for the 2.O version of Senapathy (in Indian 2), let’s first put our hands together on the age-defying superhero who rocked the 1996 box office!

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