TAMIL, Posted on Jan 25, 2013

New Delhi: What days of negotiations failed to achieve, a simple appeal from cinema’s legendary star Rajinikanth might just pull off. Rajinikanth on Friday backed embattled actor-director Kamal Haasan and appealed to the Muslim fraternity to allow him to release his film Vishwaroopam without majorly affecting the storyline of the film.

In a passionate statement issued to the media Rajini asked Muslims “to sit with Haasan and discuss the issue and allow its release without affecting its storyline”.

“Kamal is no ordinary artiste but an extraordinary one who can take Tamil cinema to new levels,” Rajini said.

Kamal Haasan’s latest film ‘Vishwaroopam’ suffered another blow on Friday when the screening was banned in Hyderabad in ‘communally sensitive areas’ because of the Milad-un-Nabi festival. The move comes after the Tamil Nadu government also banned the film on Thursday.

Police asked distributors to refrain from screening the film in communally sensitive zones only for Friday. Home Minister Sabita Indra Reddy directed police to stop the screening till Jan 28 after some Muslim leaders called on her and demanded a ban on it.

Following this, the Hyderabad police commissioner asked cinema distributors not to screen the movie at theatres in the city. Cyberabad police commissioner, covering areas around Hyderabad, also directed theatres not to show the movie

But ‘Vishwaroopam’, facing a two week-ban in Tamil Nadu, was released in more than 80 theatres in Kerala. The multi-lingual film was mainly released in B-class theatres under Kerala Cine Exhibitors Association (KCEA). It was also screened in multiplexes and some theatres run by the Kerala Film Exhibitor’s Federation (KFEF), which had declined to exhibit the movie following Haasan’s decision to premier ‘Vishwaroopam’ on DTH format, industry sources said.