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Sarkar (lit. Government) is a 2018 Indian Tamil-language action drama film[3] written and directed by AR Murugadoss, and produced by Kalanithi Maran under the banner Sun Pictures. The dialogues were co-written by Murugadoss and B. Jeyamohan. The film stars Vijay, Keerthy Suresh, Varalaxmi Sarathkumar, Yogi Babu and Radha Ravi. It follows Sundar Ramaswamy, a non-resident Indian (NRI) who arrives in India from the United States to cast his vote in the election, only to find his vote has already been recorded as casted. Ramaswamy raises awareness against electoral fraud among the masses, and decides to contest as a nonpartisian politician in the elections.

Sarkar 2018 poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAR Murugadoss
Produced byKalanithi Maran
Screenplay byAR Murugadoss
B. Jeyamohan (Dialogues)
Story byAR Murugadoss
Keerthy Suresh
Varalaxmi Sarathkumar
Yogi Babu
Radha Ravi
Music bySongs:
A. R. Rahman
Background score:
A. R. Rahman
CinematographyGirish Gangadharan
Edited byA. Sreekar Prasad
Distributed bySun Pictures
Release date
  • 6 November 2018 (2018-11-06)
Running time
164 minutes[1]
Box officeest. ₹217.13 crore[2]

Principal photography for Sarkar began in January 2018. Murugadoss collabrated with Vijay for a third time with Sarkar, which was the latter's 62nd film and given the tentative title of Thalapathy 62. In early December 2017, Sun Pictures agreed to produce the film. While Girish Gangadharan handled the cinematography, A. Sreekar Prasad served as the editor. In August, few scenes were shot at Las Vegas. Filming was completed by September 2018. The film's soundtrack, composed by A. R. Rahman with lyrics written by Vivek, received positive reviews.

After various complications, including protests and allegations of plagiarism, Sarkar was released on 6 November 2018, during the week of Diwali. It received mixed reviews; while Vijay's performance was praised, both the screenplay and sequences were criticised. A reference to Jayalalithaa in the film's audio track led to protests by members of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam. After lawsuits were registered against the makers, the said allusions were muted. As of 15 November 2018, Sarkar has grossed 217.13 crore (US$30 million) worldwide, and has emerged as a commercial success.[2]



Sundar Ramaswamy is a highly successful non-resident Indian businessman based in the United States, referred to as a "corporate monster" due to his ruthless business dealings. He arrives in Chennai to cast his vote for the Tamil Nadu Legislaative Assembly election. However, he finds out that someone else had already voted in his name. Sundar approaches the Tamil Nadu State Election Commission and demands a stay on the election result for his constituency, an annulment of the fraud elector's vote and the ability to legitimately cast his vote, to which they agree. Sundar raises awareness among the public regarding fraud voting and finds that many people too faced a similar problem to his when trying to vote.

Meanwhile, Sundar rekindles his romance with his estranged sister-in-law's sister Nila, whom he had last met five years ago. His actions bring him into conflict with two influential and corrupt politicians, M. Masilamani, who is the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, and his brother Malarvannan "Rendu". Although Masilamani's party wins the elections, the Election Commission annuls the result based on Sundar's plea and fresh elections are scheduled to take place within the next fifteen days. After attempts are made on his life by Rendu's henchmen, Sundar decides to contest the election against Masilamani as an Independent and resigns from his company to avoid any conflict-of-interest.

Initially unpopular among the masses due to his corporate background, Sundar delivers a speech detailing his rise from a humble fisherman background to a businessman, and gains popular support. He and his supporters gatecrash an event involving the merger of Masilamani's party with the opposition. After Sundar confronts Masilamani regarding his silence on district-related issues, the police brutally beat up Sundar and his supporters. At this juncture, he realises that the entire political system in the state and country needs reform, and decides to contest in all constituencies in Tamil Nadu along with his supporters. Sundar acquires video evidence wherein people who had attempted to expose Masilamani's corruption were killed under mysterious circumstances, and plans to reveal it to the media to discredit Masilamani and have him arrested.

At the same time, Masilamani's daughter Komalavalli "Pappa", based in Canada, arrives in Chennai after finding out that her father and uncle have lost support due to Sundar. She decides to spoil Sundar's reputation and frame him as a corrupt and power-hungry person. She orchestrates a car accident and frames Sundar for it, which causes him to lose considerable public support. She furthers her agenda by killing her father with an overdose of diabetic tablets, so that her party will gain sympathy votes. These crimes ensure that Pappa, the new Chief Ministerial candidate for her party, would likely win the election. Sundar decides against exposing the evidence against Masilamani as he feels that his support will further erode, which was what Pappa intended to accomplish.

On Election Day, Twitter messages generated from one "Muthukumar" allege Sundar has stashed black money in various locations, which further degrades Sundar's reputation. However, unknown to anyone, the tweets were sent by Sundar himself, as Muthukumar was one of those activists killed by Masilamani. Further messages lead to Muthukumar's decomposed body being found, exposing Pappa's lies. Meanwhile, Pappa finds that her guilty mother has decided to expose Pappa's role in Masilamani's death at Masilamani's memorial in front of the media. She arrives at the memorial with her henchmen to stop the expose, but Sundar subdues Pappa's henchmen and her mother's confession is live-streamed, which ensures that the public support is back with Sundar.

Sundar and his supporters win the election, while Pappa and Rendu are arrested for their various crimes. However, Sundar decides against becoming the Chief Minister, and instead chooses one of his supporters- a honest collector- as the next Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu.


  • Vijay as Sundar Ramswamy
  • Keerthy Suresh as Nila
  • Varalaxmi Sarathkumar as Komalavalli "Pappa"
  • Radha Ravi as Malarvannan "Rendu"
  • Pala. Karuppiah as M. Masilamani
  • Yogi Babu as Kaushik
  • Rajesh as T. N. Chari
  • J.Livingston as Venkatesan
  • Prem Kumar as Sundar Ramasamy's brother
  • Tulasi Shivamani as M. Masilamani's wife
  • Kalyani Natarajan as Sundar Ramasamy's mother
  • M. J. Sriram as Sundar Ramasamy's uncle
  • Janaki as Sundar Ramasamy's grandmother
  • Arumugam Bala as Sunder Ramasamy's driver
  • Ranjini Hariharan as Sundar Ramasamy's sister
  • Papri Ghosh as Sundar Ramasamy's sister-in-law
  • Abitha as an IIT student
  • Kavitha as an IIT student
  • Vaishali Thaniga as a voter
  • Lallu Prasad as an IIT student
  • Jashwanth Kannan as an IIT student
  • Pranav as an IIT student
  • Vicky Waran as an IIT student
  • Yuvina Parthavi as Sundar Ramasamy's niece
  • Manya as Sundar Ramasamy's niece
  • Jayaditya Kang as Kaushal, Sundar Ramasamy and Nila's nephew
  • Kanishk as as Sundar Ramasamy's nephew
  • Raneesh as Muthukumar
  • Ravi as Rathnasamy
  • K. Sivasankar as an election officer
  • S. S. Stanley as a merged party candidate
  • Alok Nath as Jethmalani
  • ECR Saravanan as an Ayodhyakuppam resident
  • Selva as an Ayodhyakuppam resident
  • Anitha Sampath as a newsreader
  • Ashwanth Thilak as a reporter
  • Raja Rani Pandian as a voting poll worker
  • Balasubramani as a police commissioner
  • Vinod as governor's personal assistant
  • A. R. Murugadoss as himself (Special appearance in "Oru Viral Puratchi")

Real-life activists such as Kalki Subramaniam, Piyush Manush and Narayanan Krishnan made cameo appearance as themselves in song "Oru Viral Puratchi".[4]


Following the successful ventures, Thuppakki and Kaththi, A. R. Murugadoss was confirmed to be the director of the 62nd film of actor Vijay. The project, tentatively titled Thalapathy 62, was slated to enter production once Vijay completed Mersal and A. R. Murugadoss completed Spyder.[5][6] Production began in January 2018, with a planned Diwali-2018 release.[7] Girish Gangadharan of Kali, Angamaly Diaries and Solo fame was the cinematographer.[8] Tulasi played the role of Vijay's mother in the film.[9] In mid-November 2017, it was reported that actor Yogi Babu was in talks to play a role in the film and actress Nayanthara was in talks to be the female lead.[10][11] A. R. Rahman was also rumoured to be in talks to compose the music of the film.[12] Sreekar Prasad, who had previously edited Thuppakki and Kaththi was the film's editor.[13]

In early-December 2017, T. Santhanam was confirmed the art director of the film, and following this, it was made official that Sun Pictures was producing the film.[14] Before the title was revealed on 21 June 2018,[15] it was referred to by the media as Thalapathy 62, as it is the 62nd film starring Vijay. Jaswanth Khanna, son of comedian Ramesh Khanna, who had worked as an assistant director, made his acting debut with this film.[16] Keerthy Suresh was later signed to play the female lead role and Varalaxmi Sarathkumar was also confirmed, playing a pivotal role.[17][18][19] Jeyamohan was recruited as writer, and shooting began in January 2018. The team had successfully completed the first and second schedules of the shoot, and begin their third schedule in Las Vegas in early August.[20] Shooting was wrapped up on 5 September, after which dubbing and post production works were carried out.[21]


The music and score of the film is composed by A. R. Rahman,[19] and lyricist Vivek penning the songs.[22] The full audio album was launched on 2 October 2018.[23] The album consist of five songs, all penned by lyricist Vivek. The team launched the very first single "Simtaangaran", which received mixed reviews, on 24 September, followed by "Oru Viral Puratchi" on the last day of the same month of September which too received positive reviews. The album in its entirety was made available for download in digital on 2 October. The promotional music event featured dance performances for the songs in the background. The soundtrack album was released and bagged under the Sony Music record label after few days the single track is released.

Sarkar is Rahman's fourth collaboration with actor Vijay, after Udhaya, Azhagiya Tamil Magan and Mersal. The audio release event of the film was conducted in a much peculiar way, where for the very first time the audience were given the privilege of launching the music album online. The audio launch event held a live telecast aired on Sun TV and on their exclusive paid service called SunNXT . Significant crew members took turns in giving a review of their experience being part of the project. Celebrities such as director Atlee turned up that night, as guests. Unlike other music events, Rahman opt out not to perform. Instead trained dancers put a rendition for the beats of his. It transpired that the album was unofficially leaked without the team's consent, ruining the hype built up for album. In essence, the soundtrack was very well received by the public, the general consensus was positive. Indiaglitz gave a 4 out of 5 star rating, but cited: "Sarkar though rich in techno and electronic treatment, finds a winning combo with its amazing lyrics".[24] Studioflicks mentioned "A mix of local and western flavour from A. R. Rahman", giving it a rating of 3.25 out of 5.[25] Behindwoods gave it 2.75 out of 5 stars and stated: "A. R. Rahman goes full-on techno for Sarkar ".[26]

All tracks written by Vivek.

Sarkar (Tamil) [Original Motion Picture Soundtrack]
1."Simtaangaran"Bamba Bakya, Vipin Aneja, Aparna Narayanan4:45
2."Oru Viral Puratchi"A. R. Rahman, Srinidhi Venkatesh5:30
3."Top Tucker"Mohit Chauhan3:41
4."OMG Ponnu"Sid Sriram, Jonita Gandhi, Shashaa Tirupati4:42
5."CEO In The House"Nakul Abhyankar, Blaaze3:52
Total length:22:30


Sarkar was released on 6 November 2018, during the week of Diwali.[27] The film opened to mixed reviews from critics, with praise for Vijay's screen presence; however, the screenplay and sequences were criticised.[28]

Political controversies

Following release, the Tamilnadu government accused the filmmakers and actor Vijay that they are inciting the people by targeting the ruling government in some scenes and defaming former chief minister J Jayalalitha by naming the main antagonist with her original name Komalavalli [a][32]. This led to numerous protests by AIADMK party members at theatres where the film is screened and vandalism of banners. AIADMK accused Sun Pictures which is owned by Kalanidhi Maran, who is the grandson of former Chief Minister M Karunanidhi of DMK of targeting the government.[33] Following threat of lawsuits from the government, the filmmakers accepted to cut a scene and mute references of Komalavalli in the audio track.[34]

Plagiarism allegations

Writer Varun Rajendran accused Murugadoss of plagiarising Sengol, a story he had registered with the South Indian Film Writer's Association in 2007.[35][36][37] After K. Bhagyaraj, the head of the Association concluded that Sarkar's script was not original, the matter was taken to court, where the judge M. Sundar said that Sun Pictures have to acknowledge Rajendran in the opening credits, and pay him compensation of 30 lakh (US$42,000); Sun Pictures and Murugadoss assented.[38]


  1. ^ Her party leader T. T. V. Dhinakaran stated that “Komalavalli (the character’s name) is not Amma’s name at all. In 2002-03 when a Congressman referred to her by this name, Amma herself said this was not her name and that she had not even done any such film role,” in the context of a contraverary over of the use of the name in the Tamil film Sarkar. [29]Jayaliatha objected to the use of the name Komalavalli in a biography and obtained a stay .[30] Her niece Deepa Jayakumar also denied Komalavalli was Jayalalithaa's birth name..[31]


  1. ^ "Sarkar Running Time". 12 November 2018. Retrieved 12 November 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Sarkar box office collection day 10: Vijay film enters the Rs 217.13-crore club in style". Firstpost. 15 November 2018. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  3. ^ SARKAR – BBFC
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Vijay 62 directed by AR Muragadoss will not be produced by Lyca Productions". 17 May 2017.
  6. ^ "Sun Pictures to produce Thalapathy 62?".
  7. ^ "Thalapathy 62 might release for Diwali 2018". 20 September 2017.
  8. ^ "Girish Gangadharan will be the cinematographer of Vijay's next Thalapathy 62". 25 October 2017.
  9. ^ "When Thalapathy Vijay treated reel mother as real mother".
  10. ^ "Vijay and Nayanthara For Vijay 62? - AR Murugadoss – TamilTwist". 16 November 2017.
  11. ^ "Yogi Babu in talks to act in Thalapathy 62". 25 November 2017.
  12. ^ "விஜய்யின் 62வது படம்- படப்பிடிப்பு எப்போது, இசையமைப்பாளர் யார்?".
  13. ^ "Sreekar Prasad roped in for Thalapathy 62". 27 November 2017.
  14. ^ "Shooting update of Vijay's Sarkar". 17 July 2018.
  15. ^ Upadhyaya, Prakash. "Thalapathy 62 title: Sarkar is the name of Vijay's next movie with Murugadoss [First look poster]". International Business Times, India Edition. Retrieved 21 June 2018.
  16. ^ "Ramesh Khanna's son Jashwanth Kannan acting in Vijay's Sarkar". 20 October 2018. Retrieved 13 November 2018.
  17. ^ "'Sarkar': Varalaxmi Sarathkumar plays CM's daughter in Vijay's film?". The Times of India.
  18. ^ "'Sarkar': Varalaxmi Sarathkumar has her fan-moment with Vijay". The Times of India.
  19. ^ a b "Vijay's next kickstarts". The New Indian Express. 19 January 2018. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
  20. ^ "Writer Jeyamohan on board for Thalapathy 62". Sify. 21 January 2018. Retrieved 21 January 2018.
  21. ^ "varu sarathkumar on Twitter". Twitter.
  22. ^ "Vivek to pen all the songs for AR Rahman in 'Sarkar'". Sify. Retrieved 26 July 2018.
  23. ^ "'Sarkar' Audio Launch on 2 October" (24 August 2018). Retrieved 11 September 2018.
  24. ^ "Sarkar Music review songs lyrics –". Retrieved 7 October 2018.
  25. ^ "Sarkar Music Review | Sarkar Songs Review | Studio Flicks". StudioFlicks. 2 October 2018. Retrieved 7 October 2018.
  26. ^ "Sarkar Music Review Summary | Sarkar Music Review". Behindwoods. Retrieved 7 October 2018.
  27. ^ "Sarkar first single: Here is the song-release date of Vijay, Keerthy Suresh's film". 27 August 2018. Retrieved 28 August 2018.
  28. ^ "Sarkar movie review and release highlights: Vijay starrer opens to mixed reviews". 7 November 2018. Retrieved 13 November 2018.
  29. ^ {{cite news|title=AIADMK protests against reference to Jayalalithaa in Vijay starrer ‘Sarkar’|url=[[hindustan Times]|date=8 November 2008}}
  30. ^ "'Sarkar' vs Tamil Nadu govt: Court grants AR Murugadoss protection, he cuts three scenes". The Indian Express. 10 November 2018.
  31. ^ "ஜெயலலிதாவின் பெயர் கோமளவள்ளி இல்லை- ஜெ.தீபா பேட்டி". tamil Samayam. 10 November 2018.
  32. ^ "Vijay's Sarkar faces backlash from ruling AIADMK, party says film could incite violence". The Indian Express. 8 November 2018. Retrieved 9 November 2018.
  33. ^ "Vijay and Maran's 'Sarkar': What AIADMK's objection to the movie is all about". The News Minute. 8 November 2018. Retrieved 9 November 2018.
  34. ^ "Tamil Film's Makers Give In To AIADMK 'Sarkar', Make 4 Cuts". Retrieved 9 November 2018.
  35. ^ "Plagiarism charges against AR Murugadoss once again – The News Minute". The News Minute. Retrieved 21 October 2018.
  36. ^ "Vijay-starrer 'Sarkar' a stolen story? Case filed against director AR Murugadoss for plagiarism". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 23 October 2018.
  37. ^ "Sarkar: Assistant director accuses AR Murugadoss of plagiarism, files complaint with writer's union". First Post. Retrieved 23 October 2018.
  38. ^ "'Sarkar' plagarism row: Director AR Murugadoss to flash message card agreeing that theme is similar". The New Indian Express. 30 October 2018. Retrieved 30 October 2018.

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