×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Indian Superstar Rajinikanth Sets Out Political Ambitions

Indian cinema superstar, Rajinikanth has announced his decision to join the political arena. The actor had been hinting about his political ambitions since 1996, but no formal announcement was made until Dec. 31, 2017.

Rajinikanth (real name Shivaji Rao Gaekwad) will start an as yet unnamed political party. He says it will contest all 234 seats of the legislative assembly in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu at the next elections.

The stylish actor, who enjoys a cult following, has two film releases lined up for 2018. Sci-fi epic “2.0,” the sequel to 2010 blockbuster “Enthiran,” will be India’s most expensive film with a budget of $70 million. “2.0” is due an April release, with gangland saga “Kaala” scheduled for later in the year.

Tamil Nadu’s Tamil language film industry is one of the country’s most prolific, alongside the Telugu and Hindi language industries. The state has been ruled by members of the film industry for most of the time since India gained independence in 1947. Chief Ministers C.N. Annadurai and M. Karunanidhi were acclaimed screenwriters, while M.G. Ramachandran and J.Jayalalithaa were hugely popular film stars.

Rajinikanth’s contemporary in Tamil cinema, the multiple-award winning actor Kamal Haasan has also announced his intention to join politics. The state has been in a political vacuum since the death of Jayalalithaa in 2016. Her party, the A.I.A.D.M.K., currently in power, is factionalized, as is Karunanidhi’s opposition party, the D.M.K.

More Politics

  • Charlize Theron speaks at the GEANCO

    Charlize Theron Talks 'White Privilege,' Growing Up During Apartheid in South Africa

    Charlize Theron, during an onstage discussion with her “Gringo” costar David Oyelowo about philanthropy at Thursday’s annual fundraiser for Nigerian children’s educational and health program GEANCO, said she was a beneficiary of “white privilege” while growing up in Apartheid-torn South Africa. “I obviously am a white person who benefited from my white privilege,” Theron said [...]

  • Trump-Twitch-channel

    Donald Trump Is Now on Amazon's Twitch Streaming Service

    Donald Trump has joined Twitch, the game-focused live-streaming service, apparently in an effort to widen his unfiltered 2020 reelection messaging as the embattled U.S. president faces a fast-moving impeachment inquiry. Trump’s first Twitch broadcast was from his campaign rally Thursday in Minneapolis, where among other targets he lashed out at Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), Somali [...]

  • Amy Klobuchar, Cory Booker, Pete Buttigieg,

    MSNBC, Washington Post to Co-Host Democratic Presidential Debate in November

    MSNBC and The Washington Post are teaming up to co-host one of the Democratic Presidential debates. The debate will take place in Georgia on Nov. 20, airing on MSNBC and streaming on MSNBC.com and the Washington Post’s website. As it stands, eight candidates are set to qualify for the showdown, according to an NBC News [...]

  • Supporters of LGBTQ rights hold placards

    Supreme Court Hears Oral Arguments on LGBTQ Discrimination

    The Supreme Court heard oral arguments Tuesday on three cases that will decide whether employers can discriminate based on sexual orientation and transgender status. The plaintiffs argue that the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which bars sex discrimination, should be read to forbid discrimination against gay and transgender employees. According to reports from the courtroom, [...]

  • Ellen DeGeneres George W. Bush

    Ellen DeGeneres Defends George W. Bush Friendship: 'We're All Different'

    Ellen DeGeneres has responded to online criticism after a photo of the daytime talk-show host seated next to former president George W. Bush at a Dallas Cowboys game Sunday received wide circulation. During her monologue on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” Monday, DeGeneres explained that Charlotte Jones, daughter of Dallas Cowboys team owner Jerry Jones, invited [...]

  • Kamala Harris

    Gavin Newsom to Headline Hollywood Fundraiser for Kamala Harris

    California Gov. Gavin Newsom is headlining a fundraiser for Kamala Harris later this month, along with a who’s who of Hollywood executives. Universal film chief Donna Langley and her husband, Ramin Shamshiri, are chairing the Oct. 24 event, along with producer J.J. Abrams and his wife, Katie McGrath. Co-hosts include Jeffrey and Marilyn Katzenberg, “The [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content