Indian: 8 interesting facts about Kamal Haasan-Shankar's franchise

Akhila Menon

Kamal Haasan's prep for Indian

The legend, who plays freedom fighter Senapathy and his son Chandru in the 1996-released film Indian, learned 'Varma Kalai', a form of martial arts for the film. Kamal Haasan won the National Film Award for Best Actor, for his performance. 

Rajinikanth was approached

Director Shankar first approached Rajinikanth, with the story idea of a senior citizen who turns vigilante. However, the superstar turned down the offer, and the director roped in Kamal Haasan for the film. 

India's official entry to the Oscars

Indian earned immense love from the audiences and critics. The 1996-released blockbuster film was also India's official entry to the Oscars, that year. 

Original footage of Netaji

The original footage of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose was used in the period portions of the film. This great effort earned the movie's technical team a National Film Award for Best Special Effects.

The rejected song

Shankar was initially reluctant to add the 'Kappal yeri poyachu' song, written by Vaali and composed by AR Rahman in the film, as he felt the lyrics were problematic. However, the director eventually included the song which remains iconic. 

A two-hero subject

After Rajinikanth turned down the film, Shankar planned to make Indian a two-hero project with popular Telugu actors Rajesekhar and Venkatesh. But later, he decided to cast Kamal Haasan as both the father and son in the film. 

The leading ladies

Aishwarya Rai was considered to play one of the female leads in the film. However, the former Miss World couldn't take up the offer due to other commitments, and the role went to Manisha Koirala. 

Most expensive Indian film

Indian was the most expensive project made in the Indian film industry, during the mid-1990s. The Kamal Haasan starrer was made with a budge of around Rs. 15 crore. The blockbuster film is now streaming on Aha Tamil and OTTplay Premium.