If you haven't seen this movie yet, you should: it's amazing. A tale of friendship, betrayal, love and revenge set in Madurai in the early 1980s, the film pioneered a new, gritty aesthetic in Tamil cinema that has caught the attention of film lovers around the world. Made on a tiny budget by a first-time director and a cast of newcomers, Subramaniyapuram was a smash hit with audiences all over South India, from the big cities to the villages.
It's also been cited as a major influence by some of India’s most respected filmmakers, including Anurag Kashyap, who dedicated his 2012 epic Gangs of Wasseypur to "The Madurai Triumvirate": Subramaniyapuram director/screenwriter/star M. Sasikumar and his mentors, directors Ameer Sultan and Bala.
The book contains an English translation of the screenplay (by Kausalya Hart and Constantine Nakassis) plus a wealth of additional material curated by Anand Pandian, a film scholar at Johns Hopkins University. There are essays by Baradwaj Rangan, Constantine Nakassis, Preminda Jacob, and Anand himself on the film's cinematic context and social impact; a full-colour gallery of film stills, never-before-seen working shots, and publicity posters; and an exclusive, wide-ranging interview with Sasikumar.
The launch is scheduled for 3:30 pm on Friday, January 17, at the Chennai Book Fair. Both Sasikumar and book editor Anand Pandian will speak and be available for signings. We encourage you to grow a beard, if you're able, and come in period costume -- though your aruvaal and bottle of naattu sarakku will probably not be allowed inside.