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'Rajni has replaced Amitabh'
A Ganesh Nadar

The dynamic duo: Rajni and Vijaykumar
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June 14, 2007 18:59 IST

Money and fame come and go but good friends are always there," says popular Tamil actor Vijaykumar of his friend Superstar Rajnikanth [Images].

The actor, who has acted in Tamil films for 35 years, says the two hit it off during the first meeting itself. Vijaykumar met the superstar for the first time in Woodlands Drive-in restaurant in Chennai.

At that time, Rajni was acting in Apoorva Ragangal while Vijaykumar lived in Royapettai, Chennai. The two met when Rajni rented the house that Vijaykumar vacated.

The first movie that they did together was Aaru Pushpangal. After that, they acted together in many movies.

"Today, he is the same person and money and fame has not affected him," Vijaykumar says. "There is a saying, 'Show me your friends and I will know what kind of person you are.' I am proud to be Rajnikant's friend."

The two have even starred in movies where Rajni was the villain and Vijaykumar, the hero. Recently, Vijaykumar has appeared as a senior artiste in Rajni's films.
Vijaykumar wanted Rajnikant to enter politics, as he felt he would make a difference since he was good at heart. But Rajni was not interested.

With obvious pride he says, "Today, he is India's number one superstar, a position earlier occupied by Amitabh Bachchan [Images]. A lot of people respect him today."

Rajni once asked Vijaykumar, "'Can I be a hero for another two to three years?' The latter replied, "You can be a hero all your life. No one can match you in style and mannerism."

Vijaykumar adds that Rajni helps people without any publicity. When his movie Baba flopped, he returned the distributor's money. "No one has done this anywhere in the world," Vijaykumar said.

"I wish him a long life. There are a lot of people who depend on him," he concluded.

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