Pawan Kumar's U-Turn goes global
The Kannada film, which was remade in Tamil and Telugu, is now being made in Filipino and may also get Chinese, Thai, Marathi, and Gujarati versions
U-Turn, director Pawan Kumar's mystery thriller, is now going places. The 2016 Kannada, which was remade in Tamil and Telugu, will now get an international audience. It is all set to be made in Filipino. The film marked the acting debut of Shraddha Srinath in Kannada, while Samantha Akkineni starred in the Tamil-Telugu bilingual remake.
Pawan Kumar announced the news on social media, saying, "Just got to know - Kim Chiu, JM De Guzman, and Tony Labrusca are teaming up for a Filipino adaptation of Indian box office hit U-Turn, the mystery thriller that first came out in theatres in 2016."
In Filipino, the film will be directed by Clarita director Derick Cabrido. Pawan, who directed the film based on a story he wrote, is elated with the new development. "When your film is remade, you feel extremely good. I feel great as a writer, more than a director. It was written based on an issue that we thought was local since it is about a flyover. I never thought people across the country would relate to it, and I certainly did not foresee it would have a worldwide reach. This has come as a surprise to me," he says.
U-Turn was also made in Sinhalese and released a month ago. "There are also plans to make it in Chinese and Thai. Negotiations for this are currently going on and contracts are being drafted," says Pawan, adding that the mystery-thriller will also get Marathi and Gujarati versions. "The best part about all this is that we did not pursue any filmmaker in any language. It was they who showed interest and contacted us, asking for the rights."
Meanwhile, Pawan Kumar is planning to start another project soon. Though he is tight-lipped about it, Cinema Express has learnt that it is going to be a Kannada film.
'We hope our Filipino version does justice to the Indian film,' says producer Enrico C Santos
Enrico C Santos, producer, Star Cinema, the film subsidiary of ABS CBN, says he is honoured and excited to take U-Turn to the Philippines. "Indian films are popular worldwide, but Filipinos have not yet discovered the full beauty of Indian cinema. We hope U-Turn will be the key to building the appetite of Filipinos in Indian cinema," says Enrico.
The producer finds it interesting that it is a horror film that will make the crossover from India to the Philippines. "We are particularly amazed by the Indian sense of horror storytelling — the beat, the twists and turns, the surprises, the engagement of both the heart and the mind. It is distinctly Indian in flavour but universal in appeal. U-Turn will hopefully make a mark among the Filipino audiences, and spark a wave of interest in Indian films," he adds.
U-Turn was recommended to Enrico and his team by a friend of Indian origin — Balan Palanisamy of Suraya Filem, a top distributor of Asian films in Southeast Asia. "In a meeting in Manila several months ago, he showed us a trailer of U-Turn and persuaded us to watch the movie on Netflix. Needless to say, we were captivated by the very original story of a girl caught in a complex curse caused by such a common urban fixture as a U-turn. We had no second thoughts about pursuing its rights and crafting a Filipino version. We hope our Filipino version does justice to the original, while giving it our distinct flavour," he says.