Everyone is wondering why Ram Gopal Varma suddenly decided to move forward his Rakht Charitra (RC) sequel from November 19 to December 3 after making a noise about taking on Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Guzaarish. The official explanation is, RC2 was not ready on time. That according to a source is pure hogwash.
The real reason why Ramu, the master of marketing manipulations has chosen December 3 is so that he could pitch his Vivek Oberoi starrer against Abhishek Bachchan's prestigious historical release Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey.
Says the well-informed source, "Ramu likes to create an extra buzz around his films. When Phoonk 2 was released with Chance Pe Dance, Ramu tried to pitch the crow in his horror film against Shahid. Abhishek and Vivek are seen to be at loggerheads. Ramu intends to play up their rivalry. Although both actors have worked repeatedly with Ramu the filmmaker is not averse to deliberately pitching them against one another."
Ramu feigns ignorance about his marketing maneuver. "The reason Rakht Charitra 2 was delayed is because the post-production took longer than we thought it would. I didn't even know our film was coming on the same day as Abhishek's. Not just that, both are based on true stories. Vivek and Abhishek play real- life characters in the two films. Having said that, let me also add that a lot of our marketing focus for RC2 would be on the Tamil superstar Surya whom I regard as next only Rajnikanth in popularity. Since he's making his Hindi debut, we're trying to figure out ways to bring him in front of the Hindi audiences."
This, according to the source, is exactly why Ramu has chosen to peg his sequel on the old Abhishek-Vivek rivalry. Says the source, "After the rejection of Rakht Charitra in the Northern belt, Ramu can't take a risk with the sequel. Surya may be a superstar in the South. In Hindi, even Rajnikanth doesn't have a market. RC2 has no songs and items to promote. At most, Surya can do some interviews before its release. He can't create an excitement around the film."
Protests Ramu, "We are not insecure about Surya's acceptance in Hindi, neither is he. We've a fusion-version of Rakht Charitra parts 1 & 2, in Tamil Nadu that we'll release on December 3. As for the Hindi release, the film will work not because of the actors but the theme."