Ever since the release of its first installment, Baahubali: The Beginning, the Baahubali franchise has gained a humongous fandom, which no other Indian movie franchise can boast for. And all the cinephiles across the country are eagerly waiting for Baahubali 2: The Conclusion, which is slated to release on 28th April, 2017. This is evident by the fact that its trailer is the most viewed Indian trailer on YouTube as of 5th April, 2017. The makers are also re-releasing the first part on 7th April, 2017 to rejuvenate the excitement of Baahubali fans. The director S. S. Rajamouli has already said publicly that the story will be concluded but the world of Baahubali is there to stay. The Rise of Sivagami, first book in ‘Baahubali trilogy’ series penned by author Anand Neelakantan was released in English on March, 2017 and has already found its place in the Amazon India’s bestseller rank list. The book will be translated in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu and will be released by the end of April, 2017. Recently, the director also announced that Baahubali team is planning to turn ‘Baahubali books’ into TV series. So, yes the world of Baahubali is here to stay. Will any Indian movie franchise ever match? No, at least not in the near future and rightly so. But, there are three upcoming South Indian movies which have the potential to be bigger than Baahubali in terms of production cost and star cast.
1) 2.0 (Tamil)
2.0 is the most strong contender among the three. The film has been directed by S. Shankar which has Superstar Rajinikanth, Akshay Kumar and Amy Jackson in the lead. The cast and crew of the film speak for themselves. The film is slated as the most expensive Indian film with a reported budget of 400 crore INR and is expected to release on 18th October, 2017. The film will be released in seven languages (Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Hindi, Japanese, Korean and Mandarin). According to the reports, the satellite rights of the film’s Tamil, Telugu and Hindi versions has been bought by Zee Network for a whopping Rs 110 crore. The teaser of the film is expected to release on 14th April, 2017.
2) Chiranjeevi and Pawan Kalyan in director Trivikram's next (Telugu)
The biggest superstars of Tollywood, Megastar Chiranjeevi and his brother Powerstar Pawan Kalyan will be seen together in a film for the first time. Yes, you read it right. This clears the rumors that all is not well between the brothers. The news was announced by veteran producer T Subbirami Reddy that he will be producing this mega movie along with producer C Ashwini Dutt. The movie will be directed by Trivikram Srinivas. Chiranjeevi has already made a splendid comeback with the blockbuster film Khaidi No. 150 (2017). And Pawan Kalyan’s latest release Katamarayudu (2017) is still running in the theatres. What more can Telugu film lovers ask for?
3) Randamoozham (Malayalam)
After years of speculation, finally the Megastar Mohanlal who has given Mollywood, its first 100 Crore film (Pulimurugan) confirmed that Randamoozham will go on floors in 2018. The film will be scripted by the veteran writer MT Vasudevan Nair and directed by Sreekumar Menon. According to the reports, the film will be shot in two parts with a massive budget of 1000 crore INR. The most acclaimed action director, Peter Hein has joined the Randamoozham team. Last week, there was news trending that Bollywood legend, Amitabh Bachchan will play the role of Bhishma. But now all the speculations have been put to rest with an official statement by actor's spokesperson that Mr. Bachchan has not yet signed the movie. There are rumors that Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Manju Warrier are being considered for the role of Draupadi. If reports are to believed, AR Rahman will be the music composer. There is no official confirmation, though.