Ace filmmaker Mani Ratnam's most ambitious venture to date, Ponniyin Selvan: 1 is scheduled for a grand worldwide theatrical release on September 30 and features the likes of 'Chiyaan' Vikram, Karthi, Jayam Ravi, Trisha, and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan forming the core star cast. Based on acclaimed Tamil author Kalki Krishnamurthy's acclaimed Tamil novel Ponniyin Selvan, Karthi will be portraying the role of warrior prince Vallavaraiyan Vanthiyathevan, who is said to be the catalyst in the epic historical fiction film, which will be coming out as a pan-Indian release in Tamil, Telugu, Hindi, Kannada, and Malayalam languages.
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With promotions kick-starting for PS: 1 this week, a new poster for Karthi as Vanthiyathevan was released on Tuesday, July 5, giving fans a glimpse of his majestic look leaving many to speculate about the details of his warrior look and his battle attire. That being said, not many are aware of the fact that Ponniyin Selvan has been a project that was attempted to be made by several leading names over the decades in Tamil cinema ranging from 'Puratchi Thalaivar' M. G. Ramachandran to 'Ulaganayagan' Kamal Haasan, including Mani Ratnam himself in the early 2010s.
Prior to the current Ponniyin Selvan: 1, which will be hitting screens in the next couple of months, Karthi's Vanthiyathevan was intended to be played by MGR in the early stages of his career, which did not materialize due to various issues at the time. Likewise, Kamal Haasan too had planned to make the film and was apparently keen on portraying the warrior prince on the big screen before the project was shelved at the initial stages itself. In the early 2010s, the Vanthiyathevan role was offered to 'Thalapathy' Vijay by Mani Ratnam when the filmmaker planned to make Ponniyin Selvan, which also included Telugu superstar Mahesh Babu, Arya, and Anushka Shetty in its cast before the proposed film was dropped. Later, in 2019, the Chekka Chivantha Vaanam director launched the film and approached Vijay once again, with the role of the adventurous spy eventually going to Karthi since there were scheduling issues with the former.
All sights will now be on Karthi and his portrayal of Vanthiyathevan in Ponniyin Selvan: 1 alongside 'Chiyaan' Vikram as the crown prince Aditya Karikalan, followed by Jayam Ravi as the great Chola emperor Arulmozhi Varman (Rajaraja Chola I), Trisha as Ilaya Piratti Kundavai Pirattiyar, and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan as Nandini. Featuring music by Academy Award-winning composer A. R. Rahman, the film also stars Prabhu, Sarath Kumar, Parthiban, Jayaram, Prakash Raj, Sobhita Dhulipala, Aishwarya Lekshmi, Jayachithra, Rahman, Vikram Prabhu, Nasser, Nizhalgal Ravi, Lal, Kishore, Mohan Ram, Riyaz Khan, Ashwin Kakamanu, Vijay Yesudas, Arjun Chidambaram, Vinodhini, Balaji Sakthivel, among others in pivotal roles.