Rajini’s Darbar to storm into theatres on Thursday

Rajini’s Darbar to storm into theatres on Thursday

A SpiceJet aircraft with Darbar livery as part of branding for the Rajinikanth-starrer movie. (Credit: Twitter)

January 9 will be that day of the year when Tamil Nadu wakes up early to welcome its evergreen superstar Rajinikanth into theatres.

Darbar, the superstar’s 166th film, will storm into theatres across the globe on Thursday morning bringing the Pongal festivities a week earlier for millions of Rajinikanth fans. This is the second consecutive year a Rajinikanth movie is releasing during the Pongal festivities. This year the harvest festival will be celebrated from January 14 to January 17.

Though three days to go for the release of the movie, produced by Lyca Productions and directed by ace filmmaker A R Murugadoss, the excitement is already evident in Chennai’s air. In Bengaluru, the Tamil version o the movie will be released in 41 screens, while the Telugu version in 4 screens. The number may go up to 50 in the Karnataka capital.

Numerous theatres and multiplexes across Tamil Nadu and elsewhere are getting ready for the celebrations by Rajinikanth fans – special shows will begin as early as 4 am on the opening day of the film in several screens in Chennai and other major cities of Tamil Nadu.

And Rajinikanth fans in Krishnagiri, where permission for an early morning show was denied, have come out with an out-of-the-box idea to welcome Darbar on Thursday. They have approached the district collector seeking permission to allow a helicopter throw flower petal on the cinema theatre which would screen the movie.

Darbar has also literally hit the skies with four SpiceJet domestic flights flying with the movie livery as part of branding for the movie, while a restaurant in Singapore has offered discounts and special offers for those watching Darbar on the first day.

Darbar, in which Nayantara plays Rajinikanth’s lady love, has evoked unprecedented expectations from fans as the superstar is donning the khaki uniform for the first time in 28 years – the last was in Pandiyan released in 1992.

“The number of screens for Darbar will be a record high even for a Rajinikanth movie. This movie might surpass all records set by Rajinikanth films in terms of expectation and pre-screening revenue. Since the business of selling the movie will go on till Wednesday night, many more theatres will sign up in the next two days,” a member of the exhibitors’ association told DH.

While more than 90 percent of multiplexes and theatres in Tamil Nadu will screen the movie as there is no other movie release of a big star this Pongal -- the movie is expected to be screened in 350 locations in the US alone. Major cities in the UK, France, Australia, Canada, Singapore and Malaysia will also release the movie on Thursday.

Most multiplexes in Tamil Nadu opened ticket bookings for Darbar on Sunday, and many screens in Tirunelveli, Tiruchirapalli and Madurai closed them within hours. Several multiplexes in Chennai are yet to open bookings for the movie.

While film industry trackers said the movie has made over Rs 200 crores in the pre-screening stage, distributors were making all-out efforts to screen the movie in the maximum number of screens in Tamil Nadu.

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