Magazine article Newsweek International

'Krrish' to the Rescue; India's New Superhero Sings, Dances and Fights Crime

Magazine article Newsweek International

'Krrish' to the Rescue; India's New Superhero Sings, Dances and Fights Crime

Article excerpt

Byline: Sonia Kolesnikov-Jessop

Superman may have returned, but if he doesn't perform up to snuff his job could soon be outsourced to India. Bollywood's first superhero, Krrish, can not only run faster than a speeding bullet and leap over tall buildings in a single bound; he can also beat back a megalomaniac who wants to control the world. What's more, he can do it all while periodically breaking into a perfect song-and-dance routine.

Indian epics like the Ramayana are brimming with outsize figures, but up to now Indians have seen very few homegrown celluloid superheroes. "Krrish" is the first big-budget Hindi film portraying an Indian avenger of evil, complete with stylish mask, a black leather coat, a heart of gold and, of course, superhuman strength. The sequel to director Rakesh Roshan's 2003 Hindi blockbuster "Koi ... Mil Gaya," in which an alien gives a mentally challenged youth superpowers, "Krrish" tells the story of how his son, Krishna, inherits those powers and grows into the new superhero.

Its $10 million budget is one of the biggest ever for a Hindi film, but still paltry compared with the $200 million reportedly spent on "Superman Returns." In addition to being an action musical, "Krrish" is also a love story between Krishna and his Singaporean girlfriend--in part to justify its being filmed in Singapore (in exchange for funding from the city-state's tourism authorities).

Even before its June 23 release, the movie broke records, drawing the biggest advance opening in the history of Hindi cinema--despite recent price hikes at the multiplex. …

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