Filmmaker SS Rajamouli spoke about the viral success of his recent film, the period epic RRR, after it was released on Netflix. The film – starring Jr NTR and Ram Charan – broke box office records in India after its theatrical release in March, but was discovered by Western audiences – especially in the US – after it debuted on streaming.
In a conversation with brothers Joe and Anthony Russo just after the release of their action movie the gray man, Rajamouli was asked about RRR’s crossover success. He said that while he appreciates Netflix for facilitating interest in the film, he has one big grouse with the streamer.
He said: “First of all, I’m actually mad at Netflix because they only took the Hindi version, and not the rest of the four (languages). So I have a complaint against them. But yeah, I was surprised by the reception from the West. A good story is a good story for everyone, but I didn’t think I could make a movie for Western sensibilities. I never believed in myself. So when it came out on Netflix and people started watching it and the word of mouth started to increase when critics started giving good reviews… I was really, really surprised and it wouldn’t have been possible without Netflix, which is why I have a lot of respect for them.”
RRR is available in the Hindi dubbed version on Netflix, but the original Telugu and other language versions are available on ZEE5. RRR is endorsed by well-known Hollywood directors like James Gunn and Scott Derrickson. Even Joe Russo was full of praise for the film.
RRR, which told a fictional story about two freedom fighters – Komaram Bheem and Alluri Sitarama Raju – earned more than Rs 1,100 crore worldwide. It remains the second biggest Indian film of the year at the box office, after KGF: Chapter 2. The Gray Man debuted on Netflix earlier this month to mixed reviews and less than phenomenal ratings.