about anything under the Sun!
First Day First Show
Its Oct 1, 2010…and if you have any strands in your DNA that remotely connect you to the Chennai area, you’d immediately recognize that today is the worldwide launch of Endhiran, Superstar Rajnikanth’s latest and possibly grandest attempt to date at making history. And the expression “First Day First Show” has been synonymous, for most of us growing up over the years watching Thalaivar perform his magic like only he can, with a release of his latest movie. Today, several years later, was no different – there it was, like clockwork at 7am, a dear friend text-ed me to say she was headed to the First Day, First show and how excited she was about it. Of course I was jealous…but that also brought back some awesome memories.
Going and watching a Rajni movie on the first day, and especially the first show, is an experience in itself. And funnily enough, it is hardly about the movie itself. Instead, it is about the adulation, the hero-worship, the devotion and the love that is showered on the phenom that’s Rajnikanth. Getting in as a fan is obviously a privilege, a sacred honor, and an opportunity that is not going to come easy. In fact, for a lot of us growing up, it was a lofty goal in life, an aspiration, to someday make it in life to be able to command a First Day First Show invitation to such an event. So, when that day did come, I finally felt like I had arrived. I lost count of the number of times we tried to fight our way into one of those gala events back in those days – taking the money route was just out of the question. Not only was it simply unaffordable back in the student days, there was no guarantee that money would actually get you in. We tried going the influential way, only to quickly realize anyone that we had considered an important personality was a nobody in Thalaivar’s universe. Muthu and Jeba, the friendly custodians at the cycle stand in the theatre complex, who we could always count on to get us in on any other day, would plead complete helplessness on this special day. We put ourself through wretched insults, just abject humiliation, all in the hope of getting that all-powerful ticket, but to no avail…until the glorious Padayappa came to life, this was a mission where I had nothing but complete failure to show for. And somehow, when the title song for Padayappa started playing, it all seemed so apt. I felt like I had finally arrived. One minor detail – I went to the launch at a local theater in Wisconsin, far far away from Albert theater, which is where you really want to be. Even if it was on foreign soil, it felt like an accomplishment worth recognizing. And the desi fans of the Superstar in Wisconsin didn’t disappoint – they put on one terrific show to make it a true celebration. The arathi/puja to kick things off, the deafening whistles when the screen credits for the Superstar in his typical style come on, the shower of dollar bills for the first fight sequence, joining Thalaivar with some nifty dance steps of their own, on stage right in front of the screen, and of course, one can’t forget the thundering applause for the classic “punch” lines – just a complete celebration of the occasion in all its glory. Simply unforgettable!
So what am I doing about Endhiran? Well, I guess I’ve fallen back in the rat race, so I couldn’t qualify for a First Day First Show pass this time around – and had to therefore be content with a Second Day Second Show ticket, so will have to make do with that. I hope His Highness does at least one more movie before he rides off into the sunset, just so I can climb back into that First Day First Show status if not anything else. Call me an optimist, but something tells me I have good reason to hope for another shot at redemption 🙂