The USP of Shankar’s 2.0 has been revealed : 3D.

In a behind-the-scenes featurette released by producer Lyca Productions, the director and his cast and crew plug the 3D virtues of the January 2018 release. 2.0 is a sequel to Endhiran (2010) and stars Rajinikanth, Akshay Kumar and Amy Jackson in key roles.

The movie’s budget is a rumoured Rs 450 crores. The featuerette provides a clue into where this money is being spent: 2.0 is being shot in 3D, rather than being made in 2D and converted to 3D in post-production. The film has not been shot in 3D for the sake of it but because the script demands it, Shankar says in the video. Nirav Shah, the project’s cinematographer, adds, “More than a movie, it is an experience.”

The short video includes glimpses of Akshay Kumar’s look – he plays the villain – and a few bites from the Bollywood star. Rajinikanth’s voice floats over the featurette.

Before Baahubali director SS Rajamouli, Shankar was the first filmmaker to have fully understood the potential of making a pan-Indian movie that transcended its original language and reached out to moviegoers across the country. Endhiran was made in Tamil, but the Hindi dubbed version, Robot, also did superb business. Shankar made sure to pick a theme – robots versus humans – that could work anywhere and cast non-Tamil actors (Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Danny Denzongpa). Rajinikanth is already familiar to non-Tamil audiences from the numerous Hindi films he has been in.

If Baahubali’s claim to fame was an imagined retelling of mythical valour, 2.0 promises a peek into the future. The video is clearly aimed at encouraging theatre owners to upgrade their facilities with 3D screening facilities. Will they take the hint?