A biopic based on the life of actor-turned politician J Jayalalithaa has been announced. Directed by Tamil filmmaker Vijay, it will go into production on February 24 next year, which is the late AIADMK leader’s birth anniversary. The first look will be released the same day, the makers said.
Hyderabad-headquartered Vibri Media will produce the film, which will be released in Tamil, Telugu and Hindi.
Jayalalithaa, a six-term Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, died of cardiac arrest on December 5, 2016. From 1961 to 1980, she appeared in 140 films, primarily in Tamil, Telugu and Kannada. She had a number of successful films with MG Ramachandran, including Ayarathil Oruvan, Chandhrodhayam (1965), Major Chandrakanth (1966) and Arasa Kattalai (1967). MGR, as the actor was popularly known, was also Jayalalithaa’s mentor and the founder of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam. In 1982, Jayalalithaa joined the AIADMK and rose to the post of the party’s general secretary. In 1991, she became chief minister for the first time. The widely loved leader was regarded by her supporters as Amma (mother), Puratchi Thalaivi (revolutionary leader) and Thanga Tharagai (golden maiden).
“Her [Jayalalithaa’s] life is an inspiration for women folk around the world,” Vibri Media Director Brinda Prasad Adusumilli said in a press statement. “This film will be a tribute to her achievements both in cinema and politics.”
The cast and other details are yet to be announced, but the film will reportedly feature actors from Bollywood as well as Southern film industries. Vibri Media’s Vishnu Induri told Mid-Day that they were looking to cast a Hindi cinema actress as Jayalalithaa.
Vijay made his directorial debut in 2007 with Kireedam, featuring Ajith Kumar. His other credits include Madrasapattinam (2010), Deiva Thirumagal (2011) and Diya / Kanam (2018).
Vibri Media is also producing a biopic about former Andhra Chief Minister NT Rama Rao, starring Balakrishna, which will be released next year. Its other big project is Kabir Khan’s ’83, which recreates India’s Cricket World Cup victory of 1983 and features Ranveer Singh as former captain Kapil Dev.
On Thursday, Chennai-headquartered production house Papertale Pictures also announced a biopic on Jayalalithaa, to be directed by A Priyadhaarshini, who works with Tamil filmmaker Mysskin. This film too has been planned as a Tamil-Telugu-Hindu trilingual, which will go on the floors on February 24 next year. A press release said that an official announcement about the cast will be made on September 20.