Kangana Ranaut's Thalaivi makers fear their unused sets may be destroyed in the rains
Incurring losses as sets built in Hyderabad and Chennai stand unused, makers of Jayalalithaa biopic featuring Kangana Ranaut hope to resume shoot before monsoons destroy outdoor set-up
The makers of Kangana Ranaut's Thalaivi are resigned to the fact that the film, like many other Bollywood offerings, will be delayed. However, they have a more pressing problem on their hands — two elaborate sets that were built in Hyderabad and Chennai have been standing unused over the past six weeks, leading to losses. If the lockdown extends to June, the makers fear the sets may be destroyed in the rains.
"We need to wrap up the film before the rains hit. Since they are outdoor set-up, they will be ruined in the monsoon. Reconstructing the set will be an expensive affair," laments producer Shailesh R Singh.
The shoot of the biopic on J Jayalalithaa, the late chief minister of Tamil Nadu, was running like clockwork until March. With a 45-day shooting stint slated to kick off on March 10, the AL Vijay-led team had constructed a set of the Parliament House at the Ramakrishna Cine Studios in Hyderabad. After the shoot would be wrapped up by the third week of April, their next pit-stop was Chennai.
"We have recreated Mount Road at the AVM Studio in Chennai, and had planned a patchwork shoot there. Almost 40 per cent of the movie is left to be filmed," says producer Vishnu Vardhan Induri, adding that they pre-emptively cancelled the Hyderabad shoot in the wake of the pandemic.
Sources say that the makers, who are bearing the maintenance cost of the sets and the studio rent, have incurred losses of R5 crore so far due to the lockdown. While Singh is unwilling to put a number to the damages, he adds, "Our team's safety is our priority. We had paid [the studio] for March, but were unable to shoot for a single day in Hyderabad. It's uncertain when the lockdown will be lifted. Even if we get a 10-day window, we will finish shooting the outdoor portions."
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