Thaana Serntha Kootam: A perfect festival film, says Suriya | Hindustan Times
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Thaana Serntha Kootam: A perfect festival film, says Suriya

Directed by Vignesh Shivan, Suriya’s Thaana Serntha Kootam is the official remake of Akshay Kumar starrer Special 26.

regional movies Updated: Jan 05, 2018 12:44 IST
Haricharan Pudipeddi
Thaana Serntha Kootam stars Suriya, Keerthy Suresh and Ramya Krishnan.
Thaana Serntha Kootam stars Suriya, Keerthy Suresh and Ramya Krishnan.

Suriya’s Thaana Serntha Kootam will be the first major Tamil release of 2018. Directed by Vignesh Shivan, the film is the official remake of Akshay Kumar starrer Special 26, and it’s slated to release for Pongal. Suriya says it’s his first festival release in seven years. “Thaana Serntha Kootam is the perfect festival release in 7 years which makes it a special film. There is no smoking or drinking scenes in the film and it earned us the appreciation of censor board members for making a clean film,” Suriya said on the sidelines of a press meet in Chennai on Thursday evening.

Thanking producer KE Gnanavel Raja for putting together the project, Suriya said: “Every director I have met and worked with has shaped my career in some way. When I met Vignesh for the first, he narrated a script he had planned to pitch to Sivakarthikeyan or Vijay Sethupathi. It was based on a real incident that took place in 1987. The same incident was the inspiration behind Neeraj Pandey’s Special 26. When I heard Vignesh’s take on the same incident, I was convinced it’s very different from the original and that’s where he earned my trust.”

Thaana Serntha Kootam is the official remake of Akshay Kumar starrer Special 26.

On being part of the project, Suriya said: “Director Hari asked me to do work with Vignesh Shivan even before I heard the story. It was evident his work attracts people of all ages. The film is a nostalgic throwback to the 80s’. You’ll see traces of Kamal Haasan’s Sathya and Varumayin Niram Sigappu in the film and it felt like going back to our roots. My role in the film is very different from anything I have essayed in the recent past. I’m angry in most of my films but not in this one. People said it was like seeing old Suriya back.” The film also stars Keerthy Suresh and Ramya Krishnan in key roles. Talking about the experience of working with them, Suriya said: “Keerthy said she has seen from fifth standard. This made me realised that I have been in the industry for twenty years. It was an honour to work alongside Ramya Krishnan maam. It’s not easy for women to maintain themselves like she does. She works in a film like Baahubali; she also does TV shows. It’s amazing how she juggles with ease, so hats off to her.”

The film marks the first time collaboration of Suriya and Vignesh Shivan. As a school boy, Vignesh watched Suriya’s Kaakha Kaakha. “I was in awe of the film and Suriya sir. It’s amazing when I think that I have made a film with him today.” Recalling how the project materialized, he said, “I didn’t have the time to do an original film. We wanted to do something very interested. So we bought the remake rights of Special 26 but modified it and made relatable to the present time even though the film is set in 80’s. We didn’t want to get stuck in the period setting because we are catering to audiences of today.” Calling Ramya Krishnan as the female equivalent to Kamal Haasan, he said: “The kind of versatility she brings to her performance is amazing.”

Thaana Serntha Kootam is slated to release for Pongal.

Talking on the occasion, producer Gnanavel Raja clarified why the film isn’t a frame-to-frame remake of Special 26. “Even though people have been calling our film a remake, I’d like to clarify a few things. Special 26 was based on a real incident. In Hindi, they portrayed the incident in their own way. We have also taken the same incident but have treated it differently. What similar about both the films is only the incident even though we officially bought the remake rights.” He heaped praise on Vignesh Shivan for portraying Suriya in a way he’d wanted to watch for a long time. “He wanted Suriya sir to not put too much effort as he wanted a character like the one he played in Ayan, with no stress or strain. Audiences will love this version of Suriya.”

Along with Telugu dubbed version Gang, Studio Green produced Thaana Serntha Kootam will hit the screens on January 12.

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