Vaiko, PMK oppose Tamil star playing Muttiah Muralitharan in biopic

News Network
October 15, 2020

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Chennai, Oct15: Tamil actor Vijay Sethupathi is facing opposition over him signing up to play the lead role in the Sri Lankan cricketer Muttiah Muralitharan biopic '800' with some political parties in Tamil Nadu on Thursday alleging that the sports star was a betrayer of the Tamils.

MDMK general secretary Vaiko alleged Muralitharan has been "identified as a betrayer of the Tamil race" by Tamils around the world for supporting the then Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa during the 2009 civil war.

When Tamil mothers in the island nation staged a hunger strike on disappearance of thousands of Tamil men, he offended them by dismissing the protest as drama, Vaiko, also a Rajya Sabha MP, alleged and asked the actor to avoid the blame of acting in the movie that intended to portray a 'betrayer'.

Pattali Makkal Kathi founder leader S Ramadoss said the news on Sethupathi playing the role of Muralitharan was 'shocking'. The actor should not support a history of 'betrayal' out of 'ignorance', he said and alleged that the cricketer was a 'betrayer' of the Tamils and a loyalist of the Rajapaksa brothers.

Naam Tamizhar Katchi top leader Seeman wondered if a movie on Muralitharan a 'betrayer' and a 'stooge' of the Sinhalese could be screened in Tamil Nadu. He urged the actor to disassociate himself from the flick immediately in deference to the sentiments of the Tamil people spread across the globe.

Veteran Tamil filmmaker Bharathirajaa said if Sethupathi avoided acting in the movie he would be remembered with gratitude by the Tamil people everywhere. "The Tamil race will never forgive betrayers," he said.

On October 8, the actor announced on his twitter handle: "Honoured to be a part of this landmark project. Update soon." Following the announcement, social media was flooded with posts against the actor reprising the career of the cricketer and there were also many posts that supported him.

On Wednesday, Dar Motion Pictures, the producers of the film said '800' was only a sports biography flick that intended to capture the journey of a man from the migrant Tamil community going on to become the highest wicket taker of all times. "The film does not make any political statement favouring any community.This film is intended to be an inspiration for the young generation to achieve their dreams irrespective of the difficulties they come across in their journey.

We assure that this film will not showcase any scenes that would belittle the struggles of Eelam Tamils in Srilanka or hurt their sentiments in any way," it said. Also, the movie house said Tamil film fraternity of Sri Lanka would be engaged to showcase their talents on a global stage.

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Agencies
October 23,2020

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Mumbai, Oct 23: With over-the-top (OTT) video and data consumption witnessing a steep surge in India led by Jio Platforms that has committed to launch an India-built 5G network in the next 12 to 18 months, the video-on-demand space is set for explosive growth, according to a new report.

According to global market research firm PwC's ‘Global Entertainment & Media Outlook 2020-2024,' the Indian E&M (Entertainment & Media) industry is expected to grow at 10.1% CAGR to reach $55 billion by 2024. 

"India is the ninth-largest consumer market for E&M and is growing rapidly. Looking solely at consumer revenues, India, the fifth-largest economy in the world, is in clear first place with an 8.8 per cent CAGR, helped by the fact that print revenues are still rising in many regions of the country," the report mentioned. 

When it comes to the subscription-based content streaming market, OTT revenue in India is likely to be the sixth largest in the world in 2024. 

"In India, explosive growth in OTT subscriptions has spurred production of short low-budget films made specifically for OTT platforms, sometimes repurposed from long-form movies whose production was halted," the PwC report mentioned. 

India's vibrant market of 40 OTT providers includes regional players targeting the country's large local-language populations. 

"Some OTT players aimed at local village audiences charge one rupee a day for access to content. Disney+, offered in India via Disney's local subsidiary Hotstar, offers a range of pricing levels from basic to premium," the findings showed. 

In June 2020, in the midst of the pandemic, Indian regulators gave the go-ahead to Facebook's $5.7 billion investment for a 9.99% stake in Reliance's Jio Platforms. 

"Jio, India's largest telecoms network, operates an expanding suite of entertainment and media apps and digital services. Within a month, Google invested $4.5 billion to pick up a 7.7 per cent stake in the company," the report said. 

In the 5G era, on-the-go consumers using high-speed mobile data will access greater quantities of content, games and services. 

Inching closer to its 5G rollout, Reliance Jio, which counts 400 million subscribers on its 4G network in India, this week achieved a 1000Mbps throughput milestone for its first round of 5G trials in partnership with US wireless-communication chip giant Qualcomm Inc. 

"The revenue opportunities opened up by 5G reach far beyond wireless data and communications themselves, encompassing markets such as gaming, entertainment, music and OTT video," the report added. 

What's more, 5G's massive network capacity is likely to continue reducing the cost of mobile data, removing the principal constraint for consumer activities such as mobile video consumption over cellular networks. 

In China, many content owners have renegotiated their arrangements with cinemas to switch their movies to OTT streaming platforms and a similar phenomenon can be seen in India.

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News Network
October 13,2020

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Mumbai, Oct 13: After his selfless act of helping migrant labourers return to their houses during COVID-19 pandemic, actor Sonu Sood has come up with an initiative to sponsor the education of students from different parts of the country.

Inspired from his late mother, the 'Dabangg' actor has decided to support IAS aspirants to pursue their dreams through Professor Saroj Sood Scholarships.

Sood intended to carry the legacy created by her forward on 13th death anniversary of his mother. Under the programme affiliated with a university, scholarships will be available to students for online and on-campus courses.

Taking to Instagram, the actor-philanthropist shared, "October 13; 13 years since my mother passed away. She left behind a legacy of education. On her anniversary today, I pledge to support IAS aspirants reach their goals thru Prof Saroj Sood Scholarships. Seeking blessings Miss u maa."

Earlier, the 47-year-old actor had helped the students of a village in Haryana to attend online classes by sending smartphones to them. Sood had also helped JEE and NEET aspirants to travel to their exam centres.

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News Network
October 15,2020

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Bengaluru, Oct 15: Bollywood actor Vivek Oberoi's Mumbai residence is being searched by sleuths of the Bengaluru Central Crime Branch (CCB) in connection with the ongoing investigation into the Sandalwood drugs case.

The search was carried out at the actor's house as he is the brother-in-law of Aditya Alva, an accused in the case who is absconding for more than two months. Alva is the son of former Karnataka minister Jeevaraj Alva.

Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Sandeep Patil said that Aditya Alva is absconding and Vivek Oberoi is his relative. "We got some information that Alva is there (at Oberoi's house). So we wanted to check and hence obtained a court warrant. A CCB team has gone to his house in Mumbai and is searching the house," he said, adding that Oberoi may also know of Alva's whereabouts and hence the house was raided.

It is not yet confirmed whether the actor was in the house when the police arrived for the search. It is learnt that police will question Oberoi to find out whether he has information about Alva's whereabouts.

Recently, the CCB police had raided Alva's posh residence near Hebbal and seized some items. The police have also issued a lookout circular against the fugitive.

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