The “first look” of the film, released today by her daughter Sundarya R Aswin and other producers, presents the actor on tiptoes in a martial arts posture. Or does it resemble a (modified) dancing Shiva? He also sports a regal beard and long hair. The accessories are limited to a bead-chain and some stone-studded anklets.
The first look of Rajinikanth's look in Kochadaiyaan.
Anyway, the first look has laid to rest the creative speculation by his fans who had generated countless images, imagining what he could look like in the movie.
The first look advertisement, released in prominent dailies from Chennai, also clarifies the genre of the movie. It will be “India’s first performance capture photorealistic film.”
In Kochadaiyaan, Rajinikanth will play a long-haired, eighth century Pandya king known for his legendary valour.
Interestingly, in a style unique to himself in Indian cinema, the actor appeared in a public function four days ago with grey hair, a balding pate and no super star airs or accessories. In fact, his onscreen and offscreen persona are completely divergent and he makes it a signature statement through his rare public appearances and extremely polite demeanour. This pioneering idea of image management has made him immensely popular, not just in Tamil Nadu, but also in other southern states, where the theatrical rights of his films command a huge premium.
End of January, Soundarya had tweeted that she had started working with her “appa” (father). She said that the shoot hadn’t yet begun, but work was on, full time. Releasing the first look also on Twitter, she said: “Tweeps. First look out this Sunday God is great!!!”
The movie will use motion capture, an animation technique used by Steven Spielberg for The Adventures of Tintin. The producers of Kochadaiyaan call it “performance capture”, probably to reflect the performances of an impressive array of A-listers such as Katrina Kaif, Sobhana, and Sarathkumar besides Rajini himself.
AR Rahman will compose the soundtrack as well as the background score. An ace Tamil director, KS Ravi Kumar will wield the megaphone.
In motion capture, the actors wear body suits with reflective magnetic markers which will plot their movements and expressions through several digital cameras and impart them to animated characters using high-end computers and software. This technique makes animation close to natural and captures even the subtle expressions and movements of body parts as one saw in Avatar or Tintin.