Pics: Rakta Charitra

Updated: October 19, 2010 18:12 IST

Ram Gopal Varma's political-thriller Rakta Charitra is a few days away from its premiere and already finds itself neck-deep in controversy.

Preview: Rakta Charitra
Ram Gopal Varma's political-thriller Rakta Charitra is a few days away from its premiere and already finds itself neck-deep in controversy.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Starring Vivek Oberoi, Suriya and Shatrughan Sinha in the lead roles, Rakta Charitra is based on the conspiracy theories that surround the 2005 assassination of Paritala Ravindra, a political leader and former cabinet minister in Andhra Pradesh who was allegedly slain by his political rivals.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Vivek Oberoi plays the role of Ravi, the protagonist and subject of this biopic. The film showcases the complex life of the leader and the darkness that engulfed it. To look the part, Oberoi has been sporting the 'Ravi' moustache.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
South Indian superstar Suriya essays the role of Ravi's political nemesis, Maddelacheruvu Suri.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Shatrughan Sinha shaved of his trademark moustache to play NT Rama Rao, the founder of Telugu Desam Party and former Andhra Pradesh CM.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Abhimanyu Shekhar Singh, who played the thrilling character of Ransa in Anurag Kashyap's Gulaal, now switches gears and embraces the role of Sane Obul Reddy, a faction leader from Anantapur district.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Radhika Apte made her debut in the film industry with the 2005 movie Vaah! Life Ho Toh Aisi!, starring Shahid Kapoor and Sanjay Dutt.

In Rakta Charitra, she plays the wife of protagonist Paritala Ravi, Paritala Sunitha.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Priyamani, best known for her National Award-winning performance in the 2006 Tamil film Paruthi Veeran, will be seen as Gangula Bhanumati, Suri's (Suriya) wife.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
RGV's take on Paritala Ravindra stretched no less than five hours. So the maverick filmmaker has decided to divide it into two halves that will release separately.

While Rakta Charitra I will be in theatres on October 22, its sequel Rakta Charitra II is slated for release on November 19 this year.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
In an interview RGV admitted Rakta Charitra could be the most violent film ever seen by Indian audiences. It not only has tremendous amounts of bloodshed, but also carries a violent intensity right through to the end.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Varma even went as far to tweet: "Having said that (All those who liked Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham better stay away from Rakta charitra) Rakta charitra is meant for men in women and not for women in men"
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Earlier this year, the movie inadvertently caused a furore when director Ram Gopal Varma posted a still from the film that showed Vivek Oberoi having an unknown actor's head tonsured.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Many found the scene to be uncomfortably close to a real-life incident where Paritala Ravi allegedly kidnapped Chiranjeevi's brother Pawan Kalyan and tonsured him.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Though Varma denied this, he still rushed to Hyderabad, apparently in a damage control mode to pacify a miffed Chiranjeevi and even offer to cut the offending scene.

Later in an interview, RGV said: "In the shot, we don't even show the face of the guy who's being tonsured. So what are these protests about? How can anyone conclude it is Pawan Kalyan we're showing? Yes, there were rumours of such an incident in real life. But nothing was proved."
Preview: Rakta Charitra
But that wasn't the end of the film's brush with controversy. Ram Gopal Varma has now decided to hold the premiere for the film in the political hot-bed that is Andhra Pradesh.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
In his opinion, this premiere is his token of good faith to pacify all those who have made claims that the film demonises Ravi and his beliefs.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
When asked if it was another publicity stunt to market his film, this is what Varma had to say: "Of course it is a publicity stunt, everything I do, I do it for publicity. I am in the business of making films and films need publicity."
Preview: Rakta Charitra
The posters of Rakta Charitra too had irked the Censors with a quote attributed to the Mahabharata, "Revenge is the purest emotion," becoming the bone of contention.

"Yes censors in Mumbai and Hyderabad had issues with the quote. Work is still in progress over that debate. Let's see what happens," said Varma.

(Text: PTI)
Preview: Rakta Charitra
The film will be simultaneously released in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
Ram Gopal Varma on the sets of his pet project.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
A still from the film.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
A still from the film.
Preview: Rakta Charitra
A still from the film.

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