Mani Ratnam, one of the most versatile filmmakers in the Indian film industry is now busy with the works of his new movie 'Ponniyin Selvan', which is being made with a grand budget. Planned to be made in two parts, this historical drama stars Vikram, Jayam Ravi, Karthi, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, and Jayaram in the lead roles. The interesting fact is that Mani Ratnam began working for this project 27 years back, and he had Kamal Haasan in mind while conceiving this movie.
Why Mani Ratnam failed to make Ponniyin Selvan with Kamal?
In an interview given to popular film critic Khalid Mohammed in 1994, Mani Ratnam had expressed his interest to make Ponniyin Selvan, a film based on Kalki Krishnamoorthy's historical movie. In the interview which was published in Film Fare, Mani Ratnam revealed that the humongous budget required to make the movie is one of the main reasons behind the delay in materialising the project.
"I like to concentrate on one project a year. Let's see which way I can go now whether I can afford whatever I fancy or play safe. I've always told myself that I should decide on my next film before finishing one. But somehow I can never do that...one of my dream projects is to adopt Ponniyin Selvan, a historical novel written by Kalki in the '50s. Kamal had bought the rights. we'd worked out a rough draft, but there's no way we could do it, to recover its costs we'd have to think of a much wider market," said Mani Ratnam, during the interview which is now available in the archives.
Mani Ratnam talked about Boney Kapoor
In 1994, it was rumored that Boney Kapoor has approached Mani Ratnam to direct a movie, but that film did not materialize due to creative differences. During the interview, Mani Ratnam also talked about this shelved project. As per Mani Ratnam, Boney Kapoor had approached him after finalizing the script, locations, and music, and this is something he could not digest as a filmmaker.
"It's funny but I'm offered a film for which the script, locations and music have already been decided. So I asked, Why do you want me? They were probably looking for a yes-man instead of a director," added Mani Ratnam.