Tamil-language film star Dhanush is to star in “Ilaiyaraja,” a biopic of a renowned Indian composer that marks the launch of joint-effort production and distribution slate by Connekkt Media and Mercuri Group, two major companies from South India.
Dhanush is one of South India’s most famous and most versatile movie stars, with credits including romance “Ranhjhanaa,” actioner “Vada Chennai” and Netflix’s “Vaathi.”Outside India, he is known for a key role in the Russo brothers’ “The Gray Man.”
Now in his 80s, Ilaiyaraja was born in humble circumstances in South India and rose to become a notable performer and composer. He is known for over 1,000 Indian film scores and for writing works for the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
The biographical film is expected to shoot in October 2024 and be released in 2025. No details of director, locations or other cast have been disclosed.
The two companies Mercuri, a multinational with interests in consulting, technology, sports, media and entertainment, and film studio Connekkt, say they are pooling forces for the next three years in order to work on a slate of big budget films. They estimate their financial commitment to be in the order of $110 million (INR93 billion).
The partnership will be based in Chennai and led by Ilamparithy Gajendran. From film production and distribution, it is expected to lead to addition ventures in streaming content, original IP, other formats and “opportunities in the wholesome South entertainment business.”
“Mercuri is one of the most reputed names in global entertainment space and has been an amazing partner to us. We are thrilled to be joining hands with them to produce multiple mega-budget films starting with the biopic of a music legend unlike any other,” said Connekkt Media executive Varun Mathur. “The Indian media and entertainment industry is at a very important juncture, with the next two decades poised for amazing growth. As a national studio our partnership with Mercuri places us in a great position to deliver enthralling content to millions of fans in India and globally during this very exciting phase.”
“Having serviced some of the biggest production houses and celebrities in the past, we feel we are better placed to expand our offerings than before as we 1699622350 jointly venture out to feed all stake holders, including the consumer,” said Sriram Bakthisaran, MD & group CEO of Mercuri.