Remaking an indie-spirited film like Pink, which quashed gender prejudices and empowered the idea of consent (with a relatively nondescript cast but for Taapsee and Amitabh Bachchan), with a commercial star isn’t the easiest of jobs for a filmmaker. Everyone had a word of praise for Ajith for headlining the Tamil remake of Pink, Nerkonda Paarvai, and his effort to be part of a project that didn’t revolve around his image as a star. The promos put the three female characters at the forefront and it was only much later that Ajith made his way into the publicity material.
As Pink’s Telugu remake featuring Pawan Kalyan, Nivetha Thomas, Ananya and Anjali gets ready to hit theatres on April 9, the vibe isn’t all that welcoming. The very fact that the film is titled around the star’s character and not the story/female character hasn’t helped its cause. Additionally, the film’s teaser did some damage too. The female leads hardly had a blink-and-a-miss appearance and the promo gave a feeling that this is any other Pawan Kalyan film where he’s the messiah of the vulnerable. That someone could reduce an issue-driven film like Pink to a commercial vehicle of a star hasn’t gone down well with many.
One must remember that Pink was a film that did largely well in the Telugu states and even ran for more than 50 days in select areas of the Nizam region. The access to OTT has also meant that its Tamil remake Nerkonda Paarvai has been watched by many viewers already. So, director Venu Sriram had his task cut-out right at the beginning of the Telugu remake. How do we come up with a remake that’s different from the other versions and also has the soul of the original? Seems like the director has chosen to play up Pawan Kalyan’s star persona in the film to lend it more colour and flavour – an obvious choice, given the star is going to be the crowd puller.
In Nerkonda Paarvai too, its director H Vinoth didn’t do away with Ajith’s image completely – a couple of action sequences and the drab of a flashback were the changes done to please the star’s fan base. In case Venu Sriram does a better job of those scenes and not get too desperate in trying to please Pawan Kalyan’s fans, we may very well have an entertaining film. It’s a delicate balance and one that might not leave everyone pleased. The star must also know where to step back in a remake of this nature. We’ll have all the answers on April 9.