Dhruva (2016 film)

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Dhruva
Dhruva Telugu film poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed bySurender Reddy
Produced by
Written byVema Reddy
Screenplay bySurender Reddy
Story byMohan Raja
Based onThani Oruvan
by Mohan Raja
Starring
Music byHiphop Tamizha
CinematographyP. S. Vinod
Edited byNaveen Nooli
Production
company
Distributed byGeetha Arts
Release date
  • 9 December 2016 (2016-12-09)[1]
Running time
165 minutes
CountryIndia
LanguageTelugu
Budget50 crore[2]
Box office87.55 crore[2]

Dhruva is a 2016 Indian Telugu-language action thriller film[3] directed by Surender Reddy and produced by Allu Aravind under his banner Geetha Arts. It features Ram Charan in the titular role, along with Aravind Swamy, Rakul Preet Singh, and Navdeep in important roles. An official remake of the Tamil film Thani Oruvan (2015), directed by Mohan Raja, it follows Dhruva, an IPS officer who wants to arrest Siddharth Abhimanyu, a wealthy scientist, who uses secret medical and illegal practices for profit.[4]

The launch and principal photography of the film took place in February 2016; filming took place in Hyderabad and Kashmir. The film features music composed by Hiphop Tamizha, cinematography was handled by P. S. Vinod and editing done by Navin Nooli respectively. The film released worldwide on 9 December 2016, after multiple postponements; it receivied positive reviews praising the performances of Ram Charan and Arvind Swamy respectively.

Plot[edit]

A low-level party cadre Chengalrayudu (Posani Krishna Murali) is tying a flag to a street-lamp post. Suddenly his pregnant wife goes into labour, but he completely ignores it, as he is more dedicated to his leader and party. At the same time, the party's deputy leader (Nassar) visits the locality; as soon as he comes to know about this incident, the leader lends his car and orders his driver to immediately take the pregnant lady to the hospital; she delivers a baby boy named Venkanna before they get to the hospital. At the age of fifteen, Venkanna secures first rank in his 10th standard state exam and visits the party deputy-leader, now the chairman of the party and a member of the ruling coalition for his blessings with his father. While they are waiting in the party office for the leader to come in, they witness a murder of a rebel party candidate by their own revered leader due to caste-related comments by the rebel on him. When the leader asks Chengalrayudu to take the blame by saying that he killed the man due to rage about the rebel's comments, Venkanna volunteers to take the blame and is willing to go to jail, citing the leniency of juvenile laws in exchange for an MLA seat for his father in the upcoming by-election. The deal is agreed and carried out.

15 years later, Dhruva (Ram Charan) and his friends Gowtham (Navdeep), Karan (Randhir Gattla), Ranveer (Ali Reza), and others are a small group of trainee IPS officers who discreetly assist the police, one activity being catching a gang which kidnapped four girls. One day Dhruva receives a cryptic text message on his phone from an anonymous number stating that he/she is aware of their discreet activities. In the evening, they go out to meet that person who is revealed to be Ishika (Rakul Preet Singh), who loves Dhruva. Later that same night they happen to witness the murder of a man who is a social activist with the pretense of snatch theft. Dhruva and his friends catch the gang and their leader (Shekar) and hand them over to the police; however, four days later the leader of the gang comes to the IPS headquarters with the home minister. This political and organised crime comes as a shock to Dhruva and his friends. Dhruva takes them to his house and shows his research on connecting all small unrelated incidents into the global view of a hidden network of politicians, industrialists and criminals who bend the law for their own financial benefits. He singles out three prominent business oligarchs, including pharmaceutical mogul Dheeraj Chandra (Sayaji Shinde), don Irfan Ali (Madhusudhan Rao) and a minister. When Dhruva tries following Dheeraj Chandra, he realises that all three of them work as a group and they all work for an affluent scientist Siddharth Abhimanyu (Aravind Swamy). After the completion of his training, Dhruva is awarded medals for specializing in dealing with organized crime during training and also for being the best probationer of the batch, and is posted as the ASP of the Organized Crime Unit.

Dhruva discovers that Siddharth is Chengalrayudu's son Venkanna. After his release from juvenile detention center, Venkanna had his name changed and left India to complete his education abroad. After his graduation he returned to India and is now a well established scientist. Siddarth uses the medical field for the wrong reasons and his own profit. Chengalrayudu is now the incumbent health and welfare minister in the minority government headed by the party leader. At that time Angelina, a Swiss pharmaceutical company owner and activist tries to make generic medicines for life-threatening diseases available in India at low cost affordable by poor people. Siddharth's assassin kills Angelina before she can sign the agreement document with the government and shoots Dhruva at the same time. While he is recovering from the gunshot wound in the hospital with the help of Ishika and Gowtham, an electronic bug (GPS + audio transmitter) is implanted during surgery. Through the bug, Siddharth listens all of Dhruva's plans and continuously monitors his whereabouts and whatever he talks via audio transmission. Then comes evidence against Siddharth in the form of Akshara (Abhinaya). She was a scientist at Siddharth's research lab, where a seaweed that can cure diabetes is found abundantly in the oceans. Siddharth tries to sell the technology and rights to extract medicine from the seaweed to multinational pharmaceutical companies but is opposed by Akshara. So Siddharth arranges goons and the goons rape and kill her. But before being killed, she records a video and stores it in an SD card so that someone will find it. But before Dhruva can find the card, Siddharth finds out and assigns Abbas to recover the card, but Dhruva tells Gowtham to get the card. Gowtham goes to the house where the SD card is at. He successfully gets the card after a fight with Abbas, but through the bug Siddharth knows this and abducts Gowtham. Gowtham fights Abbas and Siddharth but he gets drugged and before Dhruva can save him, Siddharth and Abbas kill Gowtham. Dhruva comes back to his special house where he finds a pin has been changed in a picture which turns out to be the picture of Naina Miss world of 2011 and a close aquintance of Siddharth whose girlfriend Preethi was also part of that event. Dhruva doubts whether Siddharth himself would have come to his house. Ishika checks the finger prints on the pin keeping the gun case Dhruva received from Siddharth in his posting ceremony and the finger prints match. A flashback reveals that Siddharth killed Preethi's father so that she doesn't participate in the competition and as she won't have a ticket to go to her father's funeral he requests to take her in his chartered flight and wins her over. Dhruva frantically searches for the bug which he eventually finds out in a series of thrilling events. The most hilarious part in the film is when this police officer avoids using a bug detector to find the bug implanted in his body and discovers it with his intuition or sixth sense.

Dhruva captures Abbas and records all the information from him. He drugs Abbas and manipulates Siddharth into killing him. At the same time, Siddharth's father reads the changed medical report, which contains very good medical contracts for public welfare and multiple accusations against the CM. When Siddharth learns about this, he ask Chengalrayudu to pretend to have chest pains and move outside to hospital. The ruling party forces Chengalrayudu either to resign within 24 hours or he will be dismissed. Dhruva appeals to the CM that he has evidence and wants to arrest Siddharth, and he is granted permission to do so. Hence Siddarth kills his father using his goons in an accident and forces the CM to stop actions against him or he will lie that the CM killed his father for personal vengeance. But the next day at his father's state funeral, Dhruva arrests him on the CM's orders.

When Siddharth is arrested, Dhruva tells him that the medicine was patented in Akshara's name (despite Siddarth being the inventor) and will be made as generic medicine instead of a patent-protected one. It is also revealed that Chengalrayudu is alive, saved by Dhruva and the public funeral held was for Gowtham. Dhruva makes a deal that he would save Siddharth's life for information and evidence on all of his criminal associates and activities and gives him a bulletproof vest to fake his death during his transport to court. They also plan to take down the set up planned by various VIPs to kill Siddharth when one of them gets close to Siddharth. Dhruva takes him down and pushes Siddharth back. To Dhruva's surprise, Siddharth does not wear the vest, and is fatally shot by his girlfriend Preethi as an act of vengeance for killing her father. Before dying, he tells Dhruva that he hid all the evidence in an SD card in the bulletproof vest, adding that he had not done it for the nation but because Dhruva had asked for it.

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

Development[edit]

In September 2015, producer D. V. V. Danayya had bought the remake rights of Thani Oruvan (2015), for a sum of 5.5 crore (US$770,000),[5][6] and announced that either Mahesh Babu or Ram Charan will play the lead role,[7] with the latter being finalized,[8] as Charan was impressed about the script.[9] While, Surender Reddy, Vamshi Paidipally, Mohan Raja, the director of the original film, were supposed to helm the remake,[10][11] Surender was chosen as the film's director.[12][13] In an interview with, The Times of India, Surender revealed that, it took him three months to complete the script, with two months for adapting the script in Telugu, and another month for the final draft being prepared.[14] Following the poor performance of Charan's Bruce Lee: The Fighter, Danayya stepped out of producing the venture, and subsequently Allu Aravind, bankrolled the project under the home studio Geetha Arts, collaborating with charan for the second time after Magadheera (2009).[15] The film was tentatively titled as Rakshak, before the title Dhruva was announced.[16] For his role in the film Ram Charan, had undergone rigorous training with an array of fitness experts.[17][18][19] Singer Vedala Hemachandra provided voiceover for Arvind Swamy.[20]

Casting[edit]

Initially, Madhavan was chosen to play the role of Siddharth Abhimanyu from Thani Oruvan,[21] however he did not accept the project,[22] and Arvind Swamy, was chosen to reprise his role from the original film.[23] Sources claimed that, Arvind Swamy had charged 1 crore (US$140,000) as renumeration.[24] Shruti Haasan, was chosen as the female lead, reprising Nayanthara's role,[25] collaborating with Ram Charan for the second time after Yevadu (2014),[26] however due to schedule conflicts, she could not commit the project and was replaced by Rakul Preet Singh, as the female lead.[27][28] Navdeep is apparently cast as one of Charan's cop friends which is an important role in the story.[29][30] Posani Krishna Murali, was apparently cast which is considered to be an important role in the film.[31]

The makers roped in Hiphop Tamizha, who composed for the original film, as the music composer, thus making his debut in Telugu.[32][33] Aseem Mishra, who worked in Bajrangi Bhaijaan (2015), was initially chosen as the film's cinematographer,[34] but due to his non-availability, he was replaced by P. S. Vinod.[35][36] Navin Nooli, Rajeevan and Nagendra were chosen as the editor, production designer and art director respectively.[37] The stunt sequences are choreographed by Ravi Varma.[38] Bosco-Caesar were roped in to choreograph the song sequences, who previously worked for Charan in Orange (2010).[39]

Filming[edit]

The film was scheduled to be launched on 16 January 2016,[40] however, the launch was tentatively delayed to 10 February 2016.[41][42] The film was launched at the office of the production house Geetha Arts on 18 February 2016,[43][44] and it was announced that the regular shooting of the film would commence on 22 February 2016.[45] However, the principal photography was commenced without Ram Charan,[46] and it was announced that he would join the shooting from 1 March 2016.[47][48] As the second schedule of the film was scheduled to be held on 10 March, Ram Charan undergone image makeover and look tests for the film, and was reported to join the sets from 14 March 2016.[49]

On 11 May 2016, the makers planned for a shooting schedule in Kashmir, to film an important sequence and a song,[50] and it also reported that Ram Charan may join the schedule.[50][51] Later Ram Charan and Rakul Preet moved to Kashmir, for its second schedule,[52] which was completed on 29 June,[53][54] Following the second schedule, the team moved to Hyderabad, in July 2016 to shoot important sequences, and later planned to shoot the songs in August.[55] An exclusive making video of the film was released, in which Ram Charan was performing risky stunts, all by himself, without using any body doubles.[56]

In August 2016, the makers revealed that, the talkie portion of the film has been completed, and later planned to shoot two songs, along with the completion of post-production works.[57] A special set for the introduction song of the film was erected on a huge scale.[58] For the song shoot, Ram Charan reportedly got training himself under Sultan and Dangal fame bodybuilder Rakesh Udiyar.[59][60] The song shoot was completed on late October.[61] Later, Aravind Swamy completed his portions for Dhruva.[62] The song "Pareshanura" was shot at the Krabi Islands in Thailand, which featured Ram Charan and Rakul Preet Singh.[63] The song "Neethoney Dance" was filmed at a huge set erected at Annapurna Studios, which was choreographed by Bosco-Caesar duo.[64] Following the song shoot, the principal photography was wrapped up on 14 November 2016.[65][66]

Music[edit]

Dhruva
Soundtrack album by
Released9 November 2016
Recorded2016
GenreFeature film soundtrack
Length16:49
LanguageTelugu
LabelAditya Music
ProducerHiphop Tamizha
Hiphop Tamizha chronology
Kathakali
(2016)
Dhruva
(2016)
Kaththi Sandai
(2017)

The soundtrack album and background score was composed by Hiphop Tamizha marking their debut in Telugu. The album features five tracks written by Chandrabose and Varikkuppala Yadagiri. Bollywood singer Amit Mishra, recorded the title track of the film "Dhruva Dhruva" in his Telugu debut,[67] which the composer stated it as a challenging one.[68] The song was inspired from the number "Travelling Soldier" from the Pawan Kalyan-starrer Thammudu (1999), which was stated by Ram Charan, in his US tour for the promotion of the film.[69] The makers revealed a 10-second song promo along with the track list on 1 November 2016.[70]

Initially, the makers planned for a grand audio launch event at Hyderabad on 9 November 2016, with Pawan Kalyan as the chief guest.[71][72] However, due to the announcement of the demonetisation, the said audio launch was cancelled,[73][74] and the album was directly released to stores and online by Aditya Music,[75] which acquired the audio rights,[76] on the said before date.[77] While the songs are newly composed, the song "Theemai Dhan Vellum" from the original film, was reused in Telugu, titled "Manushi Musugulo Mrugam Neney Ra" which was used for promotional purposes. The song was released as a bonus track on 7 December 2016.[78]

No.TitleLyricsSinger(s)Length
1."Dhruva Dhruva"ChandraboseAmit Mishra3:27
2."Choosa Choosa"ChandrabosePadmalatha, Sniggy3:20
3."Pareshanuraaa"Varikuppala YadagiriPadmalatha, Vishnupriya Ravi3:13
4."Neethoney Dance Tonight"ChandraboseHiphop Tamizha, Nikhita Gandhi3:15
5."Manishi Musugulo Mrugam Neney Ra"Varikuppala YadagiriHiphop Tamizha, Kaushik Krish, Varikuppala Yadagiri, Arvind Swamy3:34
Total length:16:49

The soundtrack album received positive reviews from critics.[79] Behindwoods rated the album 2.75 out of 5 stating "Dhruva is an impressive album from Hip-Hop Thamizha with enjoyable and experimental compositions!"[80] Indaglitz gave 2.75 out of 5 and stated "An album that doesn't boast of formulaic songs, this one has two actress-driven songs out of the four.  While the party-time song is a rip-off, the title track stands out for its meaningful lyrics and rendition."[81] 123Telugu commented "Usually, star hero films bring a festive atmosphere to the fans, from the first look release to the movie audience. Needless to say, audio plays a key role in the success of the film. Predictions are too high. The mega power star Ram Charan's hero Dhruva has also had unmatched expectations on audio. Released amidst those expectations, the album differs from regular Telugu cinema style audio. Only four songs in this audio are 'Pareshnura', 'Neethoane Dancing' and 'Dhruva'. 'Chusa Chusa' is not remarkable. Finally, in a sense .. 'Dhruva' album is more classy, slightly different from the routine, and is an album of situations. All these songs are more impressive than the audio."[82] Milliblog commented "Hiphop Tamizha’s Telugu debut is largely the same of what they are usually known for in Tamil."[83] Bollywoodlife gave 2.5 out of 5 stars and commented "This album will catch everyone's interest as it marks Hip Hop Tamizha's debut in Telugu industry but it won't hold their attention for long. What didn't work was the almost-repetitive composition for each of the songs. But if you are a party person and you are looking for a new party number, then Neethoney Dance is a your song! For this cool, catchy song, you could give the Dhruva album a try."[84]

Release[edit]

Ram Charan planned to release the film on 7 October 2016,[85] coinciding with the Dusshera festival,[86][87] but the makers postponed its release to avoid clash with Naga Chaitanya-starrer Premam (2016);[88] later pushed its release to 25 November 2016, which clashes with the Telugu version of Sivakarthikeyan-starrer Remo (2016), however, the release was postponed.[89] The producers claimed that the 2016 Indian banknote demonetisation, has postponed the film's release.[90][91] The makers finally announced that the film will be released worldwide on 9 December 2016.[1] The film completed, the censor formalities on 21 November 2016, where it received U/A certificate from the Indian Censor Board.[92] The film was released in more than 200 screens in US, on 8 December 2016, which is a biggest release for a Telugu film ever.[93] In July 2017, a Hindi dubbed version was released by M/S Mantra India Digital Creations LLP, with Ajay Devgn and Arbaaz Khan providing voiceovers for Ram Charan and Arvind Swamy respectively.[94]

Distribution[edit]

The film's US distribution rights were sold to JollyHits for 6 crore (US$840,000),[95] The Vizag and Ceded rights were sold to 5.25 crore (US$740,000) and 9 crore (US$1.3 million).[96] Nizam rights were sold to 12.9 crore (US$1.8 million),[97] Guntur and Nellore rights were sold to 4.5 crore (US$630,000) and 2.1 crore (US$290,000).[96] Karnataka rights were sold to 6 crore (US$840,000).[96] The film earned a revenue of 57.5 crore (US$8.1 million),[98] from its theatrical rights and 9.5 crore (US$1.3 million) from satellite rights, thus earning a total revenue of 69 crore (US$9.7 million).[96]

Marketing[edit]

Ram Charan released the pre-look of the film on 12 August 2016,[99] The first look of the film was released on the occasion of Independence Day, 15 August 2016.[100][101][102] The teaser was initially supposed to be released on 5 September 2016, coinciding with Vinayaka Chathurthi.[103] However, the teaser was released on 11 October 2016, coinciding with Dusshera.[104] The teaser crossed 1 million views within 24 hours of its release.[105][106] The making video of the film was released in October 2016.[56] The theatrical trailer of the film was released on 25 November 2016, and crossed 5 million views within release.[107][108] The pre-release event of the film was held on 4 December 2016,[109] at Yousufguda Police Lines in Hyderabad,[110] where the promo vidoes of two songs "Pareshanura" and "Neethoney Dance" was released.[63] The promo of "Neethoney dance" featured appearances of Chiranjeevi, Allu Arjun, Allu Sirish, Akhil Akkineni, Shruti Hassan, producer Allu Arvind, directors Koratala Siva and V. V. Vinayak respectively.[64]

Reception[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

The Times of India, gave 4 out of 5 stars and stated "Dhruva promises to be an edge-of-the-seat entertainer and it delivers impeccably. You won’t find yourself looking away from the screen through the two-hour-forty-minute runtime. A remake done right."[111] Firstpost gave 3 out of 5 stating "Dhruva is an edgy action thriller tale about smart cop (Ram Charan) pitched against an evil mastermind (Arvind Swamy), and is a very well adapted remake of Thani Oruvan."[112] Behindwoods gave 3 out of 5 and stated "With added commercial features, "Dhruva" turns out to be an intelligent remake."[113] The Indian Express gave 3.5 out of 5 stating "This film has three stars -- its hero Ram Charan Teja, its powerful villain Arvind Swamy and its script."[114] 123telugu gave 3.5 out of 5 and stated "Dhruva is a perfect comeback film for Charan. He should be credited for choosing a unique film like this and giving his best through a standout performance. The engaging narration, interesting twists and some superb mind games are huge assets of this film. The film will impress each and every section of the audience and is bound to do well. If you ignore the small glitches here and there, this film is a perfect action entertainer to watch out this weekend."[115] Indiaglitz commented "'Dhruva' is a self-contained remake with excellent characterizations, arresting episodes, impressive dialogues and fine performances."[116] Greatandhra gave the film a 3 out of 5 stating "Apart from few minor issues, the movie is right on track. Director Surender Reddy’s slick direction, Aravind Swamy’s terrific acting and Ram Charan’s makeover added with good cinematography make the film worth a watch."[117] The Hindu rated "‘Dhruva’ leaves you with the feeling of having read a fast-paced, unputdownable thriller."[118]

In contrast, Hindustan Times rated 2 out of 5 stars and commented "Ram Charan’s performance is so physically fit that it screams for attention. Ditto the film."[119] Deccan Chronicle gave 2.5 out of 5 stars and stated "Dhruva's makers had a ready, proven, super-hit script in front of them until someone decided that's not enough."[120]

Box office[edit]

The film earned 1.51 crore (US$210,000) from its premier shows in US.[121] Wthin first week, the film earned 64.4 crore (US$9.0 million) worldwide,[122] and collected 85 crore (US$12 million) in 21 days.[123]

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