Here’s a recap of the significant stories in entertainment across Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, and Kannada films, and sometimes the odd television series as well.
Director Suni is back in the director’s chair after the fantasy adventure film Avatara Purusha (2022). His next Ondu Sarala Prema Kathe with actor Vinay Rajkumar will reportedly be released on February 8. The film also stars Swasthik Krishnan and Mallika Singh, along with an ensemble of Sadhu Kokila, Aruna Balraj, and Rajesh Nataranga. The film marks Suni’s comeback to the rom-com genre after the thriller Sakkath, the commercial entertainer Bazaar, and the fantasy adventure film Avatara Purusha. The film is backed by Mysore Ramesh with Veer Samarth composing the music and Karthik Sharma handling the cinematography.
Ravi Teja’s upcoming action entertainer Eagle has pulled out of its Sankranthi release date and has postponed its release to February 9. The Sankranthi weekend seems to be busy for the Telugu film industry as biggies such as Guntur Kaaram, Naa Saami Ranga, Saindhav, and Hanu Man were gearing up for release. However, the makers of Eagle seemed to have taken a step back to avoid clashes.
Eagle is directed by Karthik Ghattamaneni, who also cinematographs and co-edits the film. It stars Kavya Thapar, Anupama Parameswaran, and Navdeep in pivotal roles. The film is backed by TG Vishwa Prasad and Vivek Kuchibotla under the People Media Factory banner. The film has music by Davzand.
Director Arvind Sastry, known for the indie thrillers Kahi and Alidu Ulidavru returns to the director’s chair with a crime comedy titled Bisi Bisi Ice Cream. The film sees actor Arvind Iyer, known for his appearances in Bheemasena Nala Maharaja and Kirik Party, playing the lead role. It also stars Siri Ravikumar, who was last seen in Raj B Shetty’s Swathi Mutthina Male Haniye and will star in the upcoming Diganth’s Bachelor Party. BBIC reportedly follows the story of a mysterious woman who meets a lonely cab driver and the various issues that follow. It is produced by Akshara Bharadwaj under Boiled Beans Productions.
Tovino Thomas has a busy year with multiple projects on the horizon. He has the investigative thriller Identity and the fantasy adventure film Ajayante Randam Moshanam gearing up for release. His next release will be the investigative thriller Anweshippin Kandethum, in which he will be seen as a police officer. The makers recently released a new poster for the film, which sees Tovino Thomas in two orientations, depicting the duality of a man. It has the tagline, ‘Truth resolves within duality’.
Anweshippin Kandethum is directed by debutant Darwin Kuriakose from a script by Jinu Abraham. It stars Siddique, Indrans, Shammy Thilakan, Baburaj, Vineeth Thattil, Ramya Suvi, Harisree Ashokan and Rahul Rajagopal. It is produced by Kuriakose along with his brother Dolwin Kuriakose under the Theater of Dreams banner. Gautham Shankar handles the cinematography while Santhosh Narayanan handles the music. It is slated to be released on February 9.
Helmed by Kamal, Vivekanandan Viralaanu is expected to be a fun ride with Shine Tom Chacko leading the film. Antony Varghese, Shane Nigam, Neeraj Madhav, Aju Varghese and Mahima Nambiar unveiled the teaser through their social media handles. The film has music by Bijibal, cinematography by Prakash Velayudhan and editing by Ranjan Pramod.
Upendra’s directorial comeback has been in the making for quite some time. The noted actor last helmed a film in 2015, with the philosophical comedy Uppi 2. Now, the director seems to be going the sci-fi route with a rumoured post-apocalyptic film titled UI. The director recently released a video announcing that the first glimpse of the film would be released on January 8. The date was revealed after a video asking fans to decode the glimpse release date was put out.
UI is written and directed by Upendra and is backed by G Manoharan and KP Sreekanth. Apart from Upendra, the film also stars Reeshma Nanaiah, Sunny Leone, Indrajith Lankesh, and Murali Sharma. B Ajaneesh Loknath handles the music, collaborating for the first time with Upendra, while Prajwal handles the cinematography.
Director Sathyan Anthikad, who last helmed the family drama Makal and Fahad Faasil’s Njan Prakashan, is all set to reunite with Mohanlal again for a new film. The director spoke about the project’s development on a radio show and mentioned that it would be backed by Antony Perumbavoor’s Aashirvad Cinemas. This would be the 21st time the director and Mohanlal would be collaborating. The duo has made films such as Ennenum Eppozhum, TP Balagopalan MA, Adathuadathu, and Veravelpu among others.
The makers of Sivakarthikeyan’s sci-fi comedy Ayalaan recently released the trailer of the film. It sees Sivakrathikeyan’s character come into contact with an alien who clashes with an evil businessman as the latter hopes to capitalise on the alien’s superpowers. The film also stars Sharad Kelkar, Rakul Preet Singh, Isha Kopikar, Karunakaran, Yogi Babu, and Siddharth as the voice of the alien.
Ayalaan is written and directed by R Ravikumar and is backed by KJR Studios. The film has music by AR Rahman, cinematography by Nirav Shah, and Ruben as the editor. Bejoy Arputharaj from Phantom VFX acts as the VFX supervisor on the film. It is all set to be released on January 12.
The upcoming sports drama Blue Star finally has a release date. Starring Ashok Selvan and Shanthnu Bhagyaraj as rival cricketers, the film is all set to be released on January 25. It is written and directed by S Jayakumar and is produced by Pa Ranjith under the Neelam Productions banner. Govind Vasantha has handled the music while Thamizh Azhagan has handled the cinematography. The film co-stars Keerthy Pandian and Prithvi.
Venkatesh will be next seen in the action thriller Saindhav, his 75th film. The makers of the film recently released the trailer which sets the plot to be about a father and daughter, who have to fight their odds when she is diagnosed with a deadly disease. The film also stars Andreah Jeremiah, Shraddha Srinath, and Nawazuddin Siddiqui in his Telugu debut. It is set to release on January 13 on the packed Sankranthi weekend.
Saindhav is directed by Sailesh Kolanu of the HIT franchise and is backed by Venkat Boyanapalli under the Niharika Entertainment banner. Santhosh Narayanan handles the music while S Manikandan handles the cinematography.
RJ Balaji’s next film as a lead actor will be the upcoming comedy Singapore Saloon. The film is set to be released on January 25. It is directed by Gowtham, who is known for helming Kaashmora and Rowthiram. The film is produced by Vels International, who collaborated with Balaji for the third time after LKG and Mookuthi Amman. It also stars Sathyaraj, Kishen Das, Meenakshi Chaudhary, Robo Shankar, and Lal. Vivek Mervin handles the music while M Sukumar is the cinematographer.
Pan Indian Sundari starring Bheeman Raghu and Sunny Leone is an action comedy series written by Princy Denny and Lenin Johnny. The makers recently released the film's teaser. Directed by Satheesh, it co-stars Manikuttan, Aiswarya Anilkumar and Johny Antony, among others. The series will be released in five languages on HR OTT and will have music by Syam Prasad and Gopi Sunder.
Jr. NTR is all set to make a comeback to the big screens this year with the action drama Devara: Part 1. The actor was last seen in SS Rajamouli’s sensational commercial entertainer RRR, along with Ram Charan. Now, he collaborates with director Koratala Siva to bring another period drama.
The actor announced that the first glimpse video of Devara: Part 1 would be revealed on January 8. The film also stars Jahnavi Kapoor in her South Indian debut, as well as Saif Ali Khan and Prakash Raj. Anirudh Ravichander composes the music while R Ratnavelu and Sreekar Prasad handle the cinematography and editing respectively. The film is said to be a period drama and is scheduled to release on April 5.
The first song from the Girish AD directorial Premalu is out. Sung by Sanjith Hegde, the lyrical video is titled 'Kutty Kudiye' and promises a foot-tapping experience. The song is composed by Vishnu Vijay and the lyrics are penned by Suhail Koya.
Produced by Dileesh Pothan, Fahadh Faasil, and Syam Pushkaran under the banner of Bhavana Studios, the film features Naslen and Mamitha in the lead roles. The screenplay is penned by Girish AD and Kiran Josey. Ajmal Sabu is the cinematographer and Akash Joseph Varghese is the editor.
Mahesh Babu’s next film with Trivikram Guntur Kaaram is all set to be released on January 12 and is one of the biggies on the Sankranthi weekend. The film has recently cleared its censorship formalities, receiving a U/A certificate. The film is a commercial entertainer, seeing Mahesh Babu in a mass-y avatar.
Guntur Kaaram is Trivikram and Mahesh Babu’s third collaboration after Athadu and Khaleja. The film also stars Sreeleela and Meenakshi Chaudhary and is produced by Suryadevara Naga Vamsi and Sai Sajanya under the Sithara Entertainments and Fortune Four Cinemas banners. Thaman S has handled the music while Manoj Paramahamsa and Naveen Nooli have handled the cinematography and editing.
Actors Fahadh Faasil and Vadivelu are coming together again this year with a new film that is backed by the production house Super Good Films. Tentatively titled Production 98, it is the 98th film by Super Good Films which was started back in 1988. The production house was founded by RB Chaudhary and released popular Tamil films such as Thirupachi, Jilla, and Suryavamsam.
The new film is directed by Sudheesh Shankar and has music by Yuvan Shankar Raja, with lyrics by Madhan Kakry. The director and Fahadh Faasil were supposed to collaborate on a film titled Hanuman Gear with Super Good Films earlier. However, whether this film is the same or based on a new script is unclear.
Touted as the first dystopian comedy film, Gaganachari is all set to get exclusively premiered at Kerala Pop Con. It is the largest pop culture event in the state, which draws inspiration from the globally acclaimed Comic Con phenomenon. Directed by Arun Chandu, Gaganachari has been acclaimed at many international film festivals including the New York Film Awards and Los Angeles Film Awards.
Set in the backdrop of 2043 Kerala, the film stars Gokul Suresh, Aju Varghese, KB Ganesh Kumar and Anarkali Marikar. The exclusive screening will take place at Kochi on January 7, kickstarting the premiere event as main Kerala Pop Con is scheduled for January 28. The film has cinematography by Surjith S Pai and music by Shankar Sharma.