The song Vignaharta from Antim: The Final Truth released when Ganesh Chaturthi began, and today, is a chartbuster, with the track being played in mandaps across Mumbai. The film, an official adaptation of the Marathi movie, Mulshi Pattern, stars Salman Khan, Aayush Sharma, Pravin Tarde, Pragya Jaiswal, Nikitin Dheer, Mahima Makwana, Jisshu Sengupta and others. Next in line is a two-minute action and drama-packed trailer that director Mahesh Manjrekar is in the process of editing. It will be the first trailer of the film. Earlier this month, the Antim team released the first poster of the movie, where Salman plays an honest cop and Aayush, a gangster.
While it is still being decided whether the trailer will come out in the first or second week of October, the filmmaker adds that it will be followed by a song. “The two-minute trailer will have Salman, Aayush and some of the other characters and it will try to tell you a little bit about what the film is about. I am in the process of editing it. Post-production of Antim is on and we are also editing the trailer now. We released the song Vignaharta during the Ganpati season and it turned out to be a chartbuster. More than being catchy, the song is a hit because it has all the traditional elements of the Ganpati festival too which appeals to all.”
Salman is not known to be a director’s actor but someone who gets involved in each and every part of his movies – from the script to the music and marketing. “A good suggestion is always welcome. Yes, he is involved in the filmmaking process but in Antim I have tried to shred the Salman image in what he is usually seen as in all his earlier films. We have been friends for years, so he knows what I want. As far as the script is concerned, I had it ready before we shot. I had insisted that I want the film to be as I have written it. Where music and other aspects are concerned, I welcome his suggestions as he has a good ear for music.”
There’s talk that Salman is doing a special appearance in the film. Mahesh denies it emphatically, “It’s definitely not a special appearance as Salman is there throughout the film. If you see lengthwise, the character of Rama Shetty in Ardh Satya had just six scenes, but he was the main antagonist and unforgettable. We have these warped ideas of special appearances. What will you call Asrani and Samba in Sholay? You take these roles home with you. The characters make a film. Sunny Deol was hardly there in Damini but when people mention the film, they talk about his ‘dhai kilo ka haath’.”
Mahesh’s conviction in his project is high. The director says that Antim has “shaped up brilliantly and you will see Salman as you have never seen him before! This is the first time that I am working with him as a director, and he has done a fantastic job. Salman will surprise everybody with his performance. I am very happy with the film as the audience will feel after watching the movie that Salman is different and fantastic. Antim is a film right up my territory. It is an extremely realistic portrayal of a character (Aayush) who comes from the village and how he evolves into a larger-than-life person after certain incidents take place in his life.”
His next directorial, a Marathi crime thriller, Varan Bhat Loncha Ni Kon Nay Koncha, shot during the pandemic, is also ready for release at the theatres. “It’s a mind-blowing concept and one of the best films that I have ever made. It completes my trilogy – first Vaastav, followed by City Of Gold and now Varan Bhat Loncha Ni Kon Nay Koncha.”