Presented to Rajnikanth by AirAsia India CEO Sunil Bhaskaran, the aircraft was designed as part of AirAsia’s airline partnership with the movie Kabali, which was filmed in India, Malaysia and Thailand back in 2016.
AirAsia India CEO Sunil Bhaskaran and Rajnikanth also discussed the production of the movie, as well as the design and delivery of the aircraft with the livery’s creative designer Vikram Dinakaran. AirAsia was honoured to have been part of Kabali, the movie starring Rajnikanth.
“To be able to create history in the Indian cinema as the first airline to dedicate an aircraft to a movie and superstar was very exciting.
“Kabali has had fantastic reviews and overwhelmingly positive feedback. We look forward to collaborating on these types of film initiatives in the future.”– AirAsia India CEO Sunil Bhaskaran
As a follow up to the visit with Rajnikanth, AirAsia India CEO Sunil Bhaskaran also met with the films producer Kalaipuli S.Thanu.
“In 1984 Rajni made a cameo appearance in the Tamil horror movie Yaar?, and during the 100th day screening event of the movie, I said that one day when i make a movie with Rajnikanth as the lead actor, i will announce it in the sky.
“Vanathil irunthu vilambaram kudupen (I will announce it in the sky).
“Decades later, what I wished for has literally come true. Now, we have a livery of an aircraft featuring him.”– Kabali Producer Kalaipuli S.Thanu
This is the first time an airline in India has designed an aircraft livery with the image of a film personality. The aircraft has also been registered using the initials of former President of India Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam (VT-APJ).
The aircraft currently operates domestically across India including to Bengaluru, New Delhi, Goa, Pune, Chandigarh, Jaipur, Guwahati, Imphal, Visakhapatnam, Kochi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Chennai, Srinagar, Bagdogra, Indore, Hyderabad, Bhubaneswar and Ranchi.
From Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, AirAsia operates to the cities of Bengaluru, Visakhapatnam, Kolkata, Kochi, Hyderabad, Chennai, Bhubaneswar and Tiruchirappalli, whilst its long haul sister airline, AirAsia X flies from Kuala Lumpur to New Delhi, Jaipur and Amritsar.
Kabali was released in 2016 and Rajnikanth stayed in Malaysia for more than 50 days to complete 90 per cent of the movie shooting. Kabali has collected some RM13 million nationwide. Rajnikanth’s most recent release is Petta.