Rajinikanth is not only the gold standard at the box office; he’s the king of remakes as well. Presenting a list of his superhit films that were remodeled on Hindi films
Directed by R. Krishnamurthy, Billa was a remake of the hit Amitabh Bachchan starrer Don (1978). While Rajinikanth played the twin roles of Billa and Rajappa, K. Balaji, who produced the film, took over the role played by Iftikar, that of the Deputy Superintendent of Police. Sripriya played Zeenat Aman’s role in the remake while Helen reprised her role from the original. It’s said that Rajinikanth had for some reasons quit acting and he made a comeback with this film, which proved to be a superhit.
R. Krishnamurthy again directed the superstar in this remake of Deewar (1975), starring Amitabh Bachchan, Shashi Kapoor, Nirupa Roy and Parveen Babi in pivotal roles. Raja (Rajinikanth) and Ravi (Suman) played brothers raised with great struggle by Sowcar Janaki. From a dockyard worker, Raja turns into a gangster and funds his brother’s education, who later becomes a police inspector hell bent on apprehending his own kin.
Thillu Mullu (1981)
Directed by K Balachandar, who is said to have advised him to take a break from his action hero image, this comedy was a remake of Gol Maal (1979), starring Amol Palekar and Utpal Dutt and directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee. Rajinikanth had to shave his moustache for the film, reportedly making Thillu Mullu the first film where he appears without a moustache.
Directed by K. Vijayan, it was a remake of the hit action film Qurbani (1980), produced and directed by Feroz Khan. While Rajini took over Feroz’s role, it was Kannada superstar Vishnuvardhan who essayed Vinod Khanna’s role. Veteran star Sivaji Ganesan portrayed the role of a shrewd inspector made famous by Amjad Khan.
Mr. Bharath (1986)
SP. Muthuraman directed Rajini in this remake of Trishul (1978), starring Amitabh Bachchan, Sanjeev Kumar and Shashi Kapoor. Sathyaraj, who reprised Sanjeev Kumar’s role and acted as Rajinikanth’s father was actually four years younger than the star. The film became famous between the face-off scenes between Sathyaraj and Rajini and was declared a hit.
This action comedy starring Rajinikanth, Amala and Sarath Babu, directed by SP. Muthuraman was a remake of Namak Halal (1982), starring Amitabh Bachchan, Shashi Kapoor, Smita Patil and Parveen Babi. Amitabh’s popular dialogue ‘I can talk English, I can walk English…’ was reportedly retained in the film.
Dharmathin Thalaivan (1988)
Rajinikanth, Prabhu Ganesan, Charlie, Nassar, Captain Raju, Kushboo and Suhasini acted in this remake of Kasme Vaade (1978), starring Amitabh Bachchan, Raakhee, Randhir Kapoor and Neetu Singh. Directed by S. P. Muthuraman, it’s said to be the first Tamil film of Kushboo. Rajini played the dual role of an absent minded professor and a rough and tough street smart guy with aplomb in this hit film.