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Jailer: Not Vinayakan, but Mammootty was first choice for this Rajinikanth starrer

It won't be wrong to say Vinayakan stole the show in his own right. And it's a herculean task in a movie, which has Rajinikanth in the lead. But, he was not the first choice to play Varma!

Jailer: Not Vinayakan, but Mammootty was first choice for this Rajinikanth starrer
Little known fact about Jailer.

Last Updated: 06.26 PM, Aug 16, 2023

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Superstar Rajinikanth's latest movie Jailer has emerged as one of the biggest hits in the history of Tamil cinema. While Rajinikanth's screen presence, charismatic performance and unconditional love and support of his fans are the main reasons for the movie's terrific performance at the box office , one cannot understate actor Vinayakan's contribution to the movie's entertainment value. 

It won't be wrong to say Vinayakan stole the show in his own right. And it's a herculean task in a movie, which has Rajinikanth in the lead. They are only a handful of actors who have managed to outshine Rajinikanth in the same movie. And Vinayakan has joined the elite list of actors who have accomplished that feat. 

Jailer would not have been the same without Vinayakan's Varma, a mean-spirited, psychotic, idol-smuggler, who gives a convincing performance as a worthy rival to Rajinikanth's Tiger Muthuvel Pandian. However, Vinayakan was not the first choice to play Varma! 

Director Nelon had some other superstar in mind when he first conceived the movie. And Nelson's first choice was Malayalam superstar Mammootty. 

Thalapathi poster
Thalapathi poster

It's noteworthy that Rajinikanth also mentioned it during the audio release event of Jailer. Without taking names, Rajinikanth noted that Nelson wanted a big Malayalam star to play the main villain. Given that the star in question was Rajinikanth's friend, Nelson asked the Thalaivar to approach him for the movie. "When I called him (the Malayalam superstar), he expressed interest in the movie and asked me to send the director to him to hear the narration. But, after a couple of days, I didn't feel comfortable with the idea of making such a big star play such a negative role. Also, how can I hit him in the movie? I called Nelson and expressed my concerns, and he also felt the same," Rajinikanth said. 

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However, it was unclear who Rajinikanth was referring to till recently. In an interview actor Vasanth Ravi, who has played Rajinikanth's son in Jailer, confirmed that Mammootty was, indeed, approached for the movie.

Later, the filmmakers zeroed in on Vinayakan and the rest is history. Vinayakan has delivered a strong performance by speaking Tamil in a thick Malayalam accent, which gives his character an edge and adds a touch of reality. 

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