We have got together our list of top five heroes, from actors who had releases this year. The ratings are based simply on the stars popularity and box-office performances, across the world where Kollywood has a presence.
Numero uno Hero- Rajnikanth
Reason.- It was a cakewalk and even a child who follows Kollywood would tell you that superstar Rajnikanth has tremendous charisma cutting across continents, age, and gender and is evergreen. No other hero in world cinema has for so many years remained in the number one slot. People come just to watch his on-screen magic and not the film! By the way the total entertainer had a release this year Sivaji, directed by Shankar which as usual became the years highest grosser!
Plus Point- Terrific screen presence, super opening and great reach across the planet.
Minus Point- Nothing really except his reluctance to experiment with his formula.
Number 2- Vijay
Reason - He is 50 percent of the superstar and is clear number two in Tamilnadu and overseas, where he is the darling of Sri Lankan Tamils and the King in Kerala. He is trades favourite hero after Rajnikanth in Tamilnadu as his films have good penetration in B & C. He dances like a dream, does comedy and action scenes as proved by his blockbuster hit of the year Pokkiri.
Number 3- Ajit
Reason - Just one film Billa established once again that he is the `king of opening`. The film cemented his place in the superstar race. He is the industry’s best opener after Rajnikanth, but has not been able to sustain due to his city slicker image. Like his immediate competitor, he is not hot in Andhra dubbing market, and needs to improve in B & C stations.
Plus Point- Till Billa, his films have been sold on a reasonable rate ensuring that return on investment are quick and a loyal fan base.
Minus Point- Lack of content in his films, essential to get more eyeballs especially in rural market.
Number 4- Surya
Reason- He is doing a mixture of up-market and totally down-market movies and somewhere along the line it is selling. His transformation from a city hero to a mass hero has been complete with the B-grade Vel turning out to be a super hit. The actor has also proved that he has his own niche audiences who swear by him.
Plus Point- Good image which has worked to his advantage and a keen business sense.
Minus Point- Doing too many endorsements which have resulted in overexposure on television. Lost the Andhra market by dubbing a film like Vel which was a poor copy of a Telugu film!
Number 5- Dhanush
Reason- After doing a dumb flop movie like Parattai which showed him as a larger than life hero, he bounced back with Polladhavan which was closer to the image that audiences have in their mind about him. The audiences love him in the role of the good-for-nothing guy next door, an ordinary chap who against all odds triumphs in the last reel due to his sincerity and hard work.
Plus Point- Willing to experiment and goes with his gut feeling and the trouble he takes to make his movies believable.
Minus Point- At times especially after a hit turns lazy and goes back to his old ways. He has to remember that to remain at the top is constant hard work and reinvention.