It is now 28 years of Nayakan aka Nayagan, the 1987 Tamil film written and directed by Mani Ratnam (who turned a year older on June 2) and starring Kamal Haasan. The cult classic based on the life of gangster Varadarajan Mudaliar was given pride of place in Time Magazine’s ‘All time 100 Best Films’ for 2005.
Strangely though, after this critically acclaimed project, the two movie maestros never came together.
Rumour has it that after Nayakan’s runaway success, both actor and director became too big in stature to be accommodated in one film despite being family. Fact is, Mani is married to Kamal’s elder brother Charu Haasan’s daughter Suhasini.
Kamal and Mani spoke at length and decided their collaboration would have to happen ‘now or never’.
Says Kamal, “All I will say is, the answer to the question that haunts both of us — why not another film together after Nayakan? — will soon be answered. Nayakan is no doubt the most influential film of my career.