Vishal, the young action hero is the latest addition to the league of actors who have a meaningful or meaningless title before their names! His fans gave him a title Puratchi Talapathi (But it seems to be funny when translated into English-Revolutionary Commander in Chief!!) on his birthday.
The five film old 'Puratchi Thalapathy' says, "It is very pleasant to hear our names with a highly respectable title. My fans have given me the title and I accept the same with pleasure. There is no need to refuse or object to the title. The title does not even target or teases any of the existing actors. Somebody says that it is targeting Ilayathalapathy. It is wrong. I know the difference between me and Ilayathalapathy's stature." Now the posters, the trailer, and the title card of his new film proudly proclaim, 'Puratchi Thalapathy Vishal's – Malaikottai!'
The craze among Tamil stars for a title before their names is a part of the Kollywood culture. If the legendary mass hero MGR was known as Makkal Thilakam and later Puratchi Thalaivar, the thespian Sivaji Ganesan was given the title Nadigar Thilakam. Rajnikanth is the one and only Superstar (right from the days of his Bairavi in late 70's) while Kamal Hassan is Ulaga Nayagan (Kaadhal Ilavarasan then), Vijaykanth is Puratchi Kalaignar, Sarath Kumar is the Supreme Star and Sathyaraj is Puratchi Tamizhan. These titles are normally conferred by the fans (or in the name of fans!) to an actor who has completed a few years in the industry after he completes a handful of films.
Among the new generation actors, Vijay is better known as Ilayathalapathy (a title given to him by Superstar Rajnikanth) and Ajith is the Ultimate Star, lovingly referred to as Thalai by his fans.
And the young stars are not far behind. Simbhu had the title Little Superstar ever since he was a kid of 3 years old, 'Kaadhal' Bharath is Chinna Thalapathy (still under dispute!), Prashanth is Top Star and S.J.Surya is Sweet Star!