Down South
It was quite an eventful year in the South. Amongst Telugu films, it was Simha that topped at the box-office. The Balakrishna starrer directed by Boyapati Srinu, made at a budget of about 18 crores, gave a fresh lease of life to producers Parachuri Prasad and Kiriti. The distributors were happy with the box-office response and the satellite rights were sold off at Rs 3 crore. The expectations are that it may end up making nearly 40 crores.
If Simha proved to be a mega-hit, Adurs, Ye Maaya Chesave, Darling and Betting Bangarraju were hits. Adurs, with Junior NTR and Nayantara in key roles, was made at around Rs.26 crore. The film collected about Rs. 30 crore. The Gautham Menon-directed Ye Maaya Chesave, starring Naga Chaithanya and Samanta, was made at a budget of Rs 10 crore and has reportedly raked in about Rs 15 crore. The Prabhas-Kajal Agarwal starrer Darling brought for distributor Dil Raju a profit of more than Rs 4 crore after the film was made at a budget of Rs 18 crore. Betting Bangarraju, a laugh-riot made at a budget of Rs 6 crore, raked in about Rs 4 crore.

In Tamil, the first half year belonged mainly to Suriya and his brother Karthi. While Suriya delivered a hit with Singam, which is still going strong, Karthi made his presence felt in a big way with Paiyya and earlier scored with Aayirathil Oruvan, Singam and Paiyya. Singam, directed by Hari, is a cop story with Suriya and Anushka in lead roles. Produced by Studio Green, it is running to full houses at many places and is expected to bring in at least Rs.40 crore. Paiyya, which had Karthi and Tamannaah in the lead, was a road movie directed by Linguswamy. Made at a budget of Rs 12 crore, the film has till date raked in more than Rs 30 crore. Vinnaithandi Varuvaya, the Gautham Menon-directed film with Silambarasan and Trisha in the lead, won rave reviews as well as box-office success. Made on a budget of Rs 14 crore, it has brought in Rs 18 crore. Karthi's action flick Aayirathil Oruvan was lapped up by the audience due to its excellent visual effects and Karthi's performance. The C.S.Amudhan-directed Tamizh Padam, which was a spoof on Tamil cinema, was made on a shoestring budget of Rs 2.5 crore and raked in as much as Rs 8 crore. Angadi Theru, directed by Vasanthabalan and produced by Ayngaran International, was a realistic film that went on to become an average grosser. So was the case with Simbu Devan's Irumbu Kottai Murattu Singam. Mani Ratnam's Raavanan, the most-awaited movie in recent times, is doing much better than its Hindi version and trade pundits expect it to be a hit.

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