Tamil superstars Suriya and Karthi are at the centre of this raging war words between actor-director Ameer and producer KE Gnanavel Raja.
The Tamil film industry is divided over the ongoing war of words between actor-director Ameer and producer KE Gnanavel Raja of Studio Green. And Tamil superstars Suriya and Karthi are at the centre of this raging controversy.
The source of controversy remains the unresolved issues related to Paruthiveeran. The 2007 rural drama launched the acting career of Karthi and instantly made him one of the promising talents of Tamil cinema. However, the film is still entangled in legal problems, with Ameer suing Gnanavel over unpaid dues.
What is the actual issue?
Even after 16 years, Ameer and Gnanavel have not been able to reach an agreement in connection with the ownership of Paruthiveeran. Ameer claims he provided the majority of the funding in addition to writing and directing it, while Gnanavel dismisses these assertions. The case is now in the hands of the Madras High Court, awaiting a verdict.
Ameer's claims on Paruthiveeran
Ameer alleged that Gnanavel gave up on the project during the very early stages of the production. He has claimed that he took it upon himself to raise enough funds through multiple loans to complete the production. He has alleged that Gnanavel only returned to the project at the end of the production and took over it. Despite the huge success of the film at the time, Ameer is said to have suffered a lot of financial losses.
Paruthiveeran initially went on the floors in 2005 and it took more than two and half years to reach the cinemas.
Counterclaims by KE Gnanavel Raja on Paruthiveeran
Gnanavel has denied all claims made by Ameer and has made several counter-claims. He said that he had lent the director a loan to the tune of Rs 60 lakh to settle the losses he incurred from Raam (2005). In return, Ameer suggested that he would direct a film for his production banner with Karthi in the lead. And that's how Paruthiveeran came to be.
Gnanavel has accused Ameer of failing to honour the contract by finishing the production on time. And he also alleged that despite the film's commercial success, he incurred several problems, because of Ameer.
The Tamil film industry is divided over the matter
Filmmakers Samuthirakani and M Sasikumar have expressed solidarity with Ameer in the controversy.
"I strongly condemn KE Gnanavel Raja's comments on Ameer. I gave Ameer the entire amount for the last stretch production of Paruthiveeran as a loan. The film was released without settling my loan. What he is saying is true," said Sasikumar.
Expressing regret over Gnanavel's comments on Ameer, Samuthirakani noted that he was associated with the project from start to end and he was aware of everything that happened at the time in connection with the production.
"I was on the sets of Paruthiveeran for six months. But, not once did I see you (Gnanavel) there. You keep claiming that you are the producer. But, he (Ameer) is the one who made you a producer and Karthi a hero. You have spoken without any gratitude. Is it fair?," Samuthirakani said in an open letter to Gnanavel.
Samuthirakani noted that he didn't want to be involved in this matter for so long, but the latest developments prompted him to weigh in on it. He said that he has first-hand knowledge of all the struggles that Ameer had to go through to complete the production of Paruthiveeran.
"You (Gnanavel) left the project halfway, claiming you didn't have money to produce it further. And Suriya opted out of the production," claimed Samuthirakani, highlighting that approximately 50-60 people contributed funds for the film's production.
Will Suriya and Karthi break the silence on the controversy?
Amid the growing pressure, many have asked Suriya and Karthi to clear the air on the matter.
It's noteworthy that during the event that was held recently to celebrate Japan, Karthi thanked his brother Suriya for using his savings to facilitate the release of Paruthiveeran.