It is no secret that 2017 has been an eventful and unforgettable year for fans of Southern cinema. On one hand, some eagerly-awaited/ big budget movies such as ‘Baahubali 2’ delivered just what fans expected and gave the fraternity a big reason to celebrate. Similarly, the year saw several big stars such as Ajith and Vijay continue their hold over the box office. However, come to think of it, one of the biggest talking points of the year was the success attained by some films that hit screens amidst low expectations and emerged as winners none the less. Today, let us take a look at the biggest surprise hit of 2017.
Fidaa: A Shekhar Kammula directorial, ‘Fidaa’ was made on a budget of Rs 13 Cr and ended up collecting nearly Rs 90 Cr at the ticket window. Featuring Sai Pallavi and Varun Tej in the lead, it was a romantic-drama and worked despite its relatively young cast. Talking about its success, Sai Pallavi had said that she was overwhelmed by the positive response she received for ‘Fidaa’.
“It feels so overwhelming. I was really surprised by this kind of response, especially for my dialogues in the Telangana accent. I’m on cloud nine. Having learnt the Telangana accent, whenever I think of Telugu now, I can only relate with this accent,” she had told a leading daily.
Arjun Reddy: Featuring the upcoming Vijay Deverakonda and debutante Shalini Pandey in the lead, ‘Arjun Reddy’ was a ground-breaking film and featuring a bold theme as well as strong language. Directed by Sandeep Reddy, it was shot on a modest budget of Rs 4 Cr and ended up grossing nearly Rs 50 Cr at the box office. Now, that what we call a neat hit!
Aramm: This Nayanthara starrer was not your conventional film and did a splendid job of touching upon the water scarcity issue in the most straightforward way possible. Directed by debutant Gopi Nainar, it was made on a shoestring budget and collected around Rs 2 Cr in the first week itself.’’Aramm’ got the thumbs up from fans and critics alike.
PSV Garuda Vega: Shot on a relatively high budget, PSV Garuda Vega featured an out of form Dr Rajasekhar in the lead and arrived in theatres midst low expectations. However, its effective screenplay helped it open to a good response at the ticket window. It collected around Rs 3 Cr over the first weekend itself.
Angamaly Diaries: Featuring newcomer Antony Varghese in the lead, it was directed by Lijo Jose and collected Rs 20 Cr at the box office despite hitting screens without much pre-release publicity.
Rakshadhikari Baiju Oppu: Shot on a modest budget of Rs 3 cr it ended up collecting close to Rs 19 Cr at the box office and became a profitable venture for the makers. It was a comedy-drama and featured Biju Menon in the lead.
Anando Brahma: Made on a budget of around Rs 2 Cr, this horror-comedy was believed to be an underdog when at the box office. However, upon release, it ended up grossing over Rs 15 Cr at the box office. It featured Taapsee Pannu in the lead. Talking about the film, the ‘Pink’ star had said that she agreed to do it because of its terrific script.
“Horror-comedy is something that is exploited to death in the South. I have myself been a part of such films. However, the concept of ‘Anando Brahma’ was so out of the box that I said yes to it after the first line itself,” she had said in an exclusive chat with Pinkvilla South.
Ondu Motteya Kathe: Featuring debutant Raj Shetty in the lead, ‘Ondu Motteya Kathe’, this comedy-drama was described as a tribute to Dr Rajkumar and did good business at the ticket window while receiving praise from people in the industry.