Directed by Praveen Gandhi
Written by Praveen Kanth
Release date 1999 (India)
Produced by Murali Manohar
Cinematography Arthur A. Wilson
Director Praveen Gandhi
Music by Songs:A. R. Rahman(Re-used own tunes from Doli Saja Ke Rakhna)Background SCore:Sabesh-Murali
Music director A. R. Rahman, Sabesh-Murali
Cast Simran, Prashanth, Nassar, Vijayakumar, Ambika
Similar Star (2001 film), Kannedhirey Thondrinal, Poovellam Kettuppar
Jodi (English: Couple) is a 1999 Tamil romantic musical film directed by Praveen Gandhi and produced by Murali Manohar. The film features Prashanth and Simran in the lead roles, with Vijayakumar, Nassar and Srividya playing other pivotal roles. The film's soundtrack is composed by A.R. Rahman, mostly featuring music re-used from his own earlier soundtrack for the Hindi film Doli Saja Ke Rakhna. Due to Rahman's unavailability, Praveen Gandhi signed Sabesh-Murali to quickly compose the background score of the film. The film opened in September 1999 to positive reviews and became a commercially successful venture.
Kannan (Prashanth) is a young music shop employee. He dreams of a girl who wears gold anklets. One day he sees the feet of a running girl, and realises that she is the girl he has been dreaming of. He follows her. Kannan goes to a music college to repair music instruments. Gayathri (Simran), a college student, is the girl which Kannan found as his dream girl. She and her friends approach and request him to not repair the music instruments, as they are very old and unfit to use for the music contest. Kannan uses the opportunity to become close to her but Gayathri is angered by his behaviour. Kannan accompanies Gayathri to Bangalore for the music contest, where Gayathri sees Kannan getting money from a rival music band. On the day of the contest, Gayathri and her team are shocked to learn that the song which they have composed was stolen by the other troop. She assumes that Kannan has stolen and sold their work for money despite Kannan's protest that he is innocent. Kannan lends her one of the love poems he had written for her, and she sings it in the contest and wins the prize. Gayathri understands that Kannan has no role in the stealing of the song and he got money from the troop for fixing their repaired music instruments. Gayathri now realised her mistake and rushes to apologize and accept his love. Kannan gets news that his father was injured and rushes home.
Kannan’s father Rudramurthy (Nassar) is an employee in a register office who witnesses many marriages take place without the consent of couple's parents. He is against such marriages and tried to prevent one such marriage by advising the girl who had come to marry her lover and sending her home which led to quarrel and attack by groom and his friends. Kannan understood that he is going to have a tough time with his love and his father who hates love marriages. Gayathri on other hand has a family with a father who is very depressed by one incident which happened in his life. Gayathri's friend and her lover commit suicide due to pressure put up by the parents against their love. This upsets Gayathri and she is scared on how to get married to Kannan. Both Kannan and Gayathri plan to visit the family of the other, impress them, attract them and get permission for the marriage and set for their mission.
Gayathri sets out to Kannan's home as a daughter of troublesome neighbour of Kannan and Kannan sets to Gayathri's home only to earn a name of vagabond from her family. Both Gayathri and Kannan try their level best to get into the home of other's families and succeed to some extent. Gayathri manages to win the heart of Rudramurthy when she tried to stop his daughter who was about to run away from her home with her lover and succeed in that. This makes Rudramurthy accept her as his daughter-in-law. On the other hand, Kannan visits his home with much depression reason being failing to accomplish his mission. Kannan finds the reason for Gayathri's father Vengudu's condition as one incident. Vengudu is a music critic and his criticism plays a vital role in one's music career. Vengudu once made a bad criticism about a male vocalist in front of the audience and also in the next day newspaper which led the vocalist to commit suicide. The wife of vocalist shouts at him and curses him for bring her a fate. From then he stopped his critic job and has been living with remorse. Kannan attempts to solve his problem by visiting the vocalist's house and explains the current condition of Vengudu. He requests them forgive him and visit his home to which the lady accepts. On the day of the visit the lady proposes marriage alliance of her son who met Gayathri on the music contest at Bangalore with Vengudu's daughter Gayathri to which Vengudu accepts. On hearing about her marriage, Gayathri screams that she will not let this happen and sets her to convince her father. On seeing her father she is not able to speak with him as she finds her father has changed a lot and her marriage would bring him complete relief from his guilt.
However, on the day of the marriage the groom sings one of the love songs written by Kannan for Gayathri and which she sang in the music contest. One hearing the song she runs to Kannan. The groom explains to Vengudu that Kannan and Gayathri love each other very much, and not to separate them. Vengudu accepts them as he does not want to commit another mistake in his life and spend his life in guilt. Kannan and Gayathri are united.
Cee I TV's Murali Manohar signed on Prashanth to appear in their third successive Tamil production after the successes of Jeans and Kaadhal Kavidhai. The director, Praveenkanth, with the film reverted to his original name after being known as Praveen Gandhi in his debut film Ratchagan. The director also played a cameo role in the film.
Aishwarya Rai was offered the female lead role by Producer Murali Manohar after the success of her previous Tamil film, Jeans but her busy schedule in Hindi films resulted in Simran eventually winning the role. Aishwarya had then agreed to appear in a guest appearance in the film, but her unavailability led to Isha Koppikar eventually doing the part.Trisha Krishnan, winner of the Miss Chennai 1999 beauty pageant, made an appearance in an uncredited role as a friend of Simran's character.
The film shared a similar storyline to Vasanth's Poovellam Kettuppar, which incidentally had Vijayakumar and Nassar playing similar roles of leader of feuding families.
A critic from Indolink.com reviewed that "the director's light-veined screenplay keeps the movie moving at a good pace. As for the performances, Prasanth rises above the material and gives yet another breezy performance. A ravishing Simran emotes with ease and parades her umblical beauty in the song sequences."
The film was dubbed into Telugu under the same name, while a Kannada language version, Sajni, was released in 2007. A Hindi version of the film was also planned by the director with different songs and small changes in the storyline, but the project never took off. The film's success prompted director Praveen Kanth to collaborate with Prashanth and Simran again in a project called Star, but Simran soon dropped out and the film failed to replicate the success of Jodi. Furthermore, Simran and Prashanth were later paired together in Saran's Parthen Rasithen (2000), after being dubbed as a "hit pair".
The director approached A. R. Rahman to compose music for the film. But Rahman's tight schedules made him decline the offer. But the director went ahead with using Rahman's earlier tunes from the 1997 Hindi film Doli Saja Ke Rakhna, with a new song Oru Poiyavadhu added. Due to Rahman's unavailability, the director brought the duo Sabesh-Murali to complete the background score soon. Lyrics were penned by Vairamuthu.