Anyone even with a fleeting interest in cinema would know the obsession with sequels and prequels that has been prevalent in Hollywood since time immemorial. The genres of movies in which sequels and prequels are most likely to be made include adventure, superhero, sci-fi, fantasy etc. Most of these movies involve humungous budgets.
Instant recall would give us movies like the Indiana Jones movies, Jurassic Park movies, Batman series, Bourne series, Star Wars trilogy, Superman series, Iron Man series and the Spiderman series to name a few.
Indian directors and producers can’t afford to make the above mentioned movies because their budgets are simply mind numbing. In current times, a big budget Hollywood blockbuster takes around 200 million USD to make. This translates to around 1000 crores. The costliest movies made in India haven’t gone beyond 150 crores.
But there is one set of movies which could have been made by any Indian movie industry. These movies didn’t involve extra-ordinary special effects, didn’t involve many locations and generally had a very simple storyline with the hero being the pivot around which these movies revolved. That hero happened to be Clint Eastwood.
People who have followed Clint, the actor, would vouch for his sense of style and dialog delivery. The utter contempt with which he would speak these dialogs just sent the audiences into frenzy. Just imagine what he would have done as a cop, that too, a cop with disregard to his seniors and a cop who believed in doing things his way. Yes, I am talking about the ‘Dirty Harry’ movies.
Clint played the inspector in 5 ‘Dirty Harry’ movies spread across 17 years. He obviously aged quite a lot between the first and last movies. But, the spark and fire in his body language and dialog delivery wasn’t lost. The first 3 movies came within 5 years of one another (1971, 1973 and 1976) but the 4th and 5th movies were delayed quite a lot (1983 and 1988).
All these movies had very simple plots and just played to Clint’s strengths. The dialogues in these movies are all cults. A simple search in Google would give you an idea of the dialogues that Clint spoke in these movies. Even a teenager belonging to the current generation would enjoy such dialogues.
Now imagine if the ‘Dirty Harry’ series of movies are made in Tamil. Of course, there have been standalone movies like Singam and Saamy where the hero is a cop who has his own unique way of doing things and has his own punch dialogues. Critics generally reviewed these movies saying that the hero is a ‘Dirty Harry’ style cop.
But, the advantage of a series of movies are many – instant character recall, continuity in the character, the audience can travel along with the lead character etc. And in Tamil Nadu, generally cop movies are given a glorious reception and every hero worth his salt would love to do a cop movie in order to be totally accepted by the masses.
To make a ‘Dirty Harry’ style movie, one hardly requires 30 crores or so, even with the extra elements like song and dance that are a part and parcel of Indian movies. If these movies are made without songs and if they are restricted to less than 2 hours, then even better. For a grander scale, the movie can be set outside India. Even then the budget would hardly
touch 50 crores which is par for the course in the current scenario.
With Billa 2 being a prequel and just having hit the screens, the time is ripe for a sequel. Incidentally, Hari is busy with Singam 2 which is a ‘Dirty Harry’ style movie as said before. Hope he has plans to make Singam a legend by extending the character graph more. It would be interesting to see what they have done with Singam 2. Scope for more parts would be awesome.
A ‘Dirty Harry’ style series of movies is the best bet to work in a Tamil scenario as the budget is less; the subject has extra-ordinary mass appeal and the heroes would also love to work in such movies given the mass factor.
With Hindi cinema riding on a sequel wave, it’s time the Tamil industry woke up to this trend too. Singam 2 is promising in this regard. But, will Duraisingam become as legendary and long-lasting as Harry Callahan? Time will tell.
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