Citizen (film)

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Directed by Saravana Subbiah
Produced by S. S. Chakravarthy
Written by Saravana Subbiah
Balakumaran (dialogues)
Starring Ajith Kumar
Vasundhara Das
Music by Deva
Cinematography Ravi K. Chandran
Edited by Sreekar Prasad
Nic Arts
Distributed by Nic Arts
Release date
  • 8 June 2001 (2001-06-08)
Running time
181 mins
Country India
Language Tamil

Citizen is an Indian 2001 Tamil Action Revenge Thriller film written and directed by Saravana Subbiah and produced by S. S. Chakravarthy. The film features Ajith Kumar in Dual Lead Roles as a Father and Son with Meena, Vasundhara Das and Nagma playing the supporting roles. The film's score and soundtrack were composed by Deva, and cinematography was handled by Ravi K. Chandran. The Plot of the film revolves around Arivanandham alias Citizen, a Hindu adhering to Hinduism who disguises himself as a Christian named Anthony, and as a Muslim named Abdullah, in order to seek revenge from his village's destroyer and also to get justice for the Indian Law. The film was declared as a Super-Hit at the box office, with media also praising and appreciating Ajith's performance, and since this movie, Ajith has a pet nickname called The Ultimate Star.


A district collector, a judge, and a police official are all kidnapped in broad daylight. The kidnapper calls himself 'Citizen' and appears in various disguises to get at his targets. C.B.I. officer Sarojini (Nagma) finally traces the common factor among the kidnapped trio to the fictional hamlet of Athippatti, inhabited by fishermen, but to her surprise, the village does not appear on the official gazette maps. Excavations reveal evidence of a massacre that must have taken place a couple of decades previously. 'Citizen' is finally apprehended. He explains that as a child he was the sole survivor of the massacre twenty years previously, and reveals that the three kidnapped officials perpetrated the massacre to gain power and money, and he wants the citizenship of the three government officials and their families to be revoked as a punishment for their atrocities.



Early indications suggested that the film directed by Saravana Subbiah was a remake of the 1973 English film The Day of the Jackal, but it proved to be untrue.[1] Ajith Kumar put on weight for the film, which would feature him in nine roles, and he claimed that he was inspired by Kamal Haasan's award-winning performances.[2] Sameera Reddy was originally a part of the cast but canceled due to conflicting commitments.[3][4] Subsequently, singer Vasundhara Das, who had earlier appeared in Hey Ram, was chosen to play the leading lady, while Nagma was selected to essay the role of a police officer.[5] A special feature on the making of the film was broadcast by Sun TV in May 2001.[6] Gemini Ganesan was also initially meant to play a role in the film, but his character was later altered in the script and replaced by Pandiyan.[7]

After months of pre-production, shooting started on 28 December 2000 with Ajith and Vasundhara Das, with Ravi K. Chandran as cinematographer who had replaced P. C. Sriram in the project.[8][9] The location for the Athipatty scenes was an island situated on the outskirts of Chennai, and it took three hours for the team to travel from the city and then by boat to get there.[10][11] A scene filmed at Rajaji Hall featured five thousand of Ajith's fans as extras.[5] A song in the film was shot in Australia in mid 2000, delaying the proposed release date of 1 May.[12]


Citizen was successful and completed 100-day run at the box office, justifying a relatively large budget of 5 crore. The review from The Hindu labelled it as a "definite milestone in Ajit's acting career", but criticised the synchronisation between the dubbing artiste, Anuradha, and Nagma.[13]

The film was later dubbed and released as Criminal in Telugu, to mixed reviews.[14] The actor and director began to work on another project titled Itihasam, written by Sujatha and focusing on caste issues, but the production was shelved.[15]


Soundtrack album to Citizen by Deva
Released 2001
Genre Feature film soundtrack
Language Tamil
Label Vega Music
Roja/Mass Audios
Nic Audio
Producer Deva

The music was composed by Deva.

No. Title Singer(s) Length
1. "Australia Desam " Hariharan, Harini 6:46
2. "Merkey Vidhaitha Sooriyaney - I" Tippu 6:12
3. "Merkey Vidhaitha Sooriyaney - II" Shankar Mahadevan 6:12
4. "Pookara Pookara" Shankar Mahadevan, Vasundhara Das 6:20
5. "Chikkimukki Kallu" Shankar Mahadevan, Sadhana Sargam, 6:51
6. "I Like you" Vasundhara Das 6:52


  1. ^ "". 2000-11-16. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  2. ^ "Filmfare - Print Edition". Archived from the original on 6 October 2013. Retrieved 13 May 2013. 
  3. ^ "Grill mill -- Sameera Reddy". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 2008-03-21. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ a b "". Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  6. ^ "The Hindu : Fiesta for film buffs". 2001-05-10. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Citizen". 2001-05-01. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  9. ^ Kamath, Sudhish; Kannan, Ramya; Kumar, S.Shiva (2000-12-29). "Talk of the town". Chennai, India: The Hindu. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  10. ^ Ayyappa Prasad Posted: Sat 13 Jan 2001 IST (2001-01-13). "Kamal Hassan inspired me - Ajith". Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  11. ^ Kumar, N. Ravi (2001-03-09). "Placid isle makes waves". Chennai, India: The Hindu. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  12. ^ "". 2001-05-29. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  13. ^ "not". Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  14. ^ "Telugu Cinema - Review - Citizen - Ajith, Vasundhara Das & Nagma - Saravanan Subbaiah". 2001-12-28. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 
  15. ^ "Arts & Culture". 3 April 2002. Archived from the original on 22 October 2013. Retrieved 2013-05-13. 

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