South Indian cinema buffs are in for a treat - classic films of yesteryears superstars N.T. Ramarao (NTR) and M.G. Ramachandran (MGR) are all set to be re-released with better colour and additional visuals.
"Srinivasa Kalyanam", a black and white costume drama that catapulted former Andhra Pradesh chief minister N.T. Ramarao (NTR) to fame in the 1960s in Tamil Nadu, is being colour-corrected for release later this month, producer O.K. Mani told IANS.
Its Telugu version "Venkateshwara Mahatmyam" too is getting ready simultaneously. Two fresh songs composed by M.S. Vishwanathan have been added to the movie.
NTR, who later founded the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) and went on to become chief minister of Andhra Pradesh, played the role of several Hindu gods in his films. A whole generation of cinema buffs always saw NTR's face at the mere mention of lord Rama or Krishna.
According to Mani, several computer graphic visuals and snatches of the annual festival at the famed temple in Tirupati have been added to "Srinivasa Kalyanam". The film's total length has, however, been trimmed to 120 minutes and its sound has been digitised to fit it into the modern movie idiom.
Mani has also acquired the rights to re-release movies of late Tamil Nadu chief minister M.G. Ramachandran. Spurred by the successful re-release of the Hindi classic "Mughal-e-Azam", the producer said that three of MGR's classics were being re-edited and would be released soon.
"While people were not very sure about the commercial angle for the Hindi films, NTR- and MGR-starrers are evergreen box office bets because whenever they are released, they collect a sizeable amount of money. Besides, both are cult figures even today," Mani said.
The films of MGR, who founded the AIADMK, which are being re-packaged include "Ulagam Sutrum Valiban" (1973), "Adimaippen" (1969) and "Nadodi Mannan" (1958). These films had Latha, former actress and AIADMK chief Jayalalitha and Saroja Devi as MGR's female leads.
While "Nadodi Mannan" was a black and white film, "Ulagam Sutrum Valiban" and "Adimaippen" were in colour.
All the three are being trimmed and "Nadodi Mannan" is being colour-corrected, Mani said. The three films will be released one after another from October onwards in cinemascope with digitised sound, he added.
The three MGR movies were accorded a limited re-release in their old format in 2007 and all of them fared well.
While the NTR movie will be released with just five prints, "Ulagam Sutrum Valiban" will have 50, publicists said.