Just 11 days more for Pongal 2011, and theatres in Tamil Nadu have already been booked. It is undoubtedly the biggest festival season for Tamil cinema.
Up to the late 90's, producers used to release six to eight films during this festival season including superstar films.
The Pongal releases which have been confirmed are Dhanush's Vetrimaran directed Aadukalam, Chief Minister Karunanidhi written Ilaignan, Karthi's Siruthai and if all goes well Vijay's Kaavalan. There are also half a dozen small films which are also desperately looking for screen space.
Among the lot Aadukalam has been censored and promotions for the film have started on Sun TV. The audio launch which took place a month back was shown on the channel on Sunday afternoon; kick starting the promotions of one of the most eagerly awaited films of the year.
Siruthai audio had a soft launch as it hit the stores directly on December 30. The film will be censored this week and is sure to hit the theatres on January 14.
Chief Minister Karunanidhi written Ilaignan has also been censored and will release on January 14, with a lot of promotions going on in Kalaignar TV.
The big question being asked by the trade is whether Vijay's Kaavalan will release for Pongal. Sources close to Sakthi Chidambaram who is marketing the film say it will positively release on January 14 worldwide. Kaavalan is likely to be censored this week as the producers are busy completing the post-production work of the film.
Pongal 2011 is going to be crucial. It is the last big stretch of holiday season before Kollywood is going to get hit by World Cup cricket from February 19 to April 2.
Then it is the assembly election fever in Tamil Nadu during April-May, normally the peak period for release of biggies.
Traditionally the industry considered it to be the ideal time to release a film due to the weather and festival mood and large number of holidays .