The Malay version of Rajinikanth's "Kabali" will release next week. PR Handout

Kabali, the highly-anticipated new movie starring Tamil superstar Rajinikanth, is drawing huge crowds in Singapore since its premiere on Thursday.

Long queues were formed outside the Rex cinema at Mackenzie Road and fans were seen performing aarti (an offering normally reserved for Hindu deities) of a 4-meter tall cut-out of Rajinikanth. Fans were seen putting garlands on the cut-outs of the actor, who has returned to the big screen after two years.

A spokesman for Rex said that they have hired additional security and put up barricades to manage the crowd. Ahead of the movie's first screening, the cinema chain opened online ticket booking services on Wednesday.

He also added that the Friday night screening tickets were all sold out at Rex's Mackenzie Road branch. The theatre has 736 seats across its three halls, all of which were showing Kabali along with its other outlet at Golden Mile Tower, which seats 1,000 audiences.

Cathay Cinemas screened the film across its five branches and experienced similar craze for the tickets. A spokesman for Cathay said the overwhelming online bookings slowed down their servers and they had to increase the number of sessions for the show.

Both Rex and Cathay Cinemas have priced Kabali per show tickets at $18 where as the normal ticket rates are $10 to $15.

Produced by Kalaipuli S Thanu and directed by Pa Ranjith, the gangster movie has been shot mostly in Malaysia. Rajinikanth and Radhika Apte are in the lead, and there are several actors from Malaysia and Taiwan as well.

Prusothman, a 29-year-old engineer who watched the movie on Friday evening said he had bought his tickets online the day before.

"I've been waiting to catch Kabali. This is the first time Rajinikanth is working with a new director, so I'm excited to see what this movie will be like," he told The Straits Times.