Chiranjeevi’s 150th film hits screens; Police spruce up security

Telugu superstar-turned-politician Chiranjeevi is back on the silver screen after nearly a decade, with his film ‘Khaidi No. 150’ releasing in theatres today, January 11. The film is being released on Wednesday to avoid a clash with the other big film, Nandamuri Balakrishna-starrer ‘Gautamiputra Satakarni’, which will hit screens a day later.

It is the 61-year-old actor’s 150th film and is expected to see the biggest opening ever in Tollywood, surpassing S.S. Rajamouli’s ‘Baahubali: The Beginning’. Chiranjeevi’s son K.Ram Charan’s film ‘Dhruva’, which released on December 9, has been taken off and replaced with his dad’s comeback film. Ram Charan is also the producer of ‘Khiladi No. 150’.

Since the past two days, Chiranjeevi fans have been queuing up outside cinemas in lakhs to purchase the first-day first-show tickets. And at many theatres across Hyderabad, shows were sold off within an hour after bookings opened. The release day of the film is being considered as an unofficial holiday, while in the Gulf region where an estimated four lakh Telugus live, certain companies have already declared a holiday on January 11.  

Police have also put up security measures in place to avoid any untoward incident and clashes between the fans of the two big stars of Telugu cinema. People have been warned against indulging in hooliganism, hate-mongering and trolling on social media. Andhra DGP N Sambasiva Rao was quoted as saying, “Fans should keep away from controversies and violence, just watch the films and your favourite heroes. No need to talk ill or bad of the other actors or their fans or to discuss their castes. Anyone found fighting on the streets or instigating violence will not be spared. It is also Sankaranti festival time.”  

‘Khiladi No. 150’, directed by V V Vinayak, is a remake of A R Murugadoss’s Tamil film ‘Kaththi’. The movie stars Kajal Agarwal opposite Chiranjeevi, who take on corporates snatching land illegally from poor farmers, in the action-packed movie with punchy dialogues.