Movies have always been a part of our lives and we all have grown up watching movies of different kind almost of all genres. The beauty of the Dark Room (Theater), super colossal cut outs, the applauds for a Hero’s Entry, Interval Snacks, and the fever of First Day-First Shows have added to the vogue of Cinema in India. Karnataka is a ball park for Culture and Language, the Film Industry here has contributed a lot to Indian Cinema. In this context, let us take a look at few Lesser Known Facts about Kannada Film Industry on today’s article.
From the time of black and white films to today’s 3D Graphics, the Indian Cinema has come a long way and in the journey, we have witnessed and embraced the Greats like Dilip Kumar, Dr.Raj Kumar, Prithviraj Kapoor, NT Rama Rao, Puttanna Kangal, Shyam Bengal, Madan Mohan, IlayaRaja, Mohammad Rafi, Lata Mangeshkar, SP Balasubramaniam, and others.
The unsung glory of Karnataka and the heritage of a language like Kannada has to be recognized in a bigger way. It is a known fact that Kannada Film Industry (KFI) is not as big as Bollywood and other South Indian Film Industries but it has endowed a way to foster and proclaim the art and culture of Karnataka in its own way.
#1 The very first Kannada Movie ‘Sati Sulochana’ was made with a Budget of Rs.40,000 way back in 1934
#2 Kannada Director Girish Kasaravalli has a credit of maximum Golden Lotus Awards (National Film Award for best Feature Film) only after Satyajith Ray
#3 An off-beat Kannada film Shanthi is the Second Indian film to enter the Guinness Book of World Records that featured only a single actor. Other characters in the film were only represented by symbols and voices.
#4 The Music Maestro Illaya Raja started his career as an Assistant to the Legendary Music director G.K Venkatesh, who was a noted Artist in Kannada Film Industry
#5 Shankar Nag was the first Indian Director to experiment the under water shooting. Movie was ‘Ondu Mutthina Kathe’ starring Dr.Raj Kumar
#6 Rajnikanth’s first Debut movie was in Kannada. He entered films through a Kannada movie called ‘Katha Sangama’ directed by Puttanna Kanagal in 1975
#7 The Script of Kasturi Nivasa was originally written for Shivaji Ganesan (Tamil)
One of the all-time hits of Sandalwood, Kasthuri Nivasa was a Tamil script purchased for Rs.30,000. It so happened that Shivaji Ganeshan had to reject the script for a reason that the lead role will die in the climax. Later on, Dorai-Bhagwan liked the script and produced the movie in Kannada. The interesting thing to note here is that the same Kasturi Nivasa was remade in Tamil with the same Shiva Ganeshan in a lead role. It also got remade in Hindi with Sanjeev Kumar as the lead.
#8 ‘Baare Baare’ song from the movie ‘Nagarahaavu’ directed by Puttanna Kanagal was the first slow motion song in the history of Indian Cinema
#9 Mungaru Male is the first Indian Movie to be screened for a year in Multiplex
#10 Shankar Nag’s Malgudi Days
It is said that R.K Narayana didn’t lend his writing to any Film directors but he only approached Shankar Nag to direct his writing and thus ‘Malgudi Days’ was made. The name Malgudi is derived from two popular localities of Bengaluru; Mal (Malleswaram) and Gudi (Basavanagudi).
#11 Many of Dr.Raj Movies were remade to other Languages
It was a time when Biggies of other Film Industries used to wait for the release of Dr.Raj Kumar’s movie. Many of his movies were re made to other languages. Haalu Jenu was remade as Anuraja Aralithu in Telugu, Vasantha Geetha was remade as Pyaar Jhkuta Nahin in Hindi, Shankar Guru was remade as Mahaan in Hindi, Prathidhawani inspired Deewar, and Nanobba Kalla inspired Shakti (Hindi).
#12 Dr.Vishnuvardhan was keen on playing the role of Bhoja Raja in Kavi ratna Kaalidasa
Kavi Ratna Kalidasa is a movie based on the life of poet Kalidasa. It is said that Dr. Vishnuvardhan was keen on playing the role of Bhoja Raja but due to reasons, it went to Shrinivas Moorthy.
#13 Om movie directed by Upendra and Shivraj Kumar in the lead has re-released for more than 500 times in the last 20 years. Record at National and International level
#14 The tune of Anisuthide’ was first proposed for the movie America America
One of the all time hits songs of Sandalwood, Anisuthide was proposed for movies America America and Mathaad Mathaad Mallige before it was picked by Yograj Bhatt for Mungaru Male. Nagatahalli Chandrashekar had to reject the tune for a reason that it didn’t match his scripts.
#15 Haalu Jenu was first planned for Ananth Nag
It is said that the legendary Haalu Jenu script was first proposed to Veteran actor Ananth Nag. He could not do it due to his busy schedules and later on, it came to Dr. Rajkumar. Today, it is quite hard to imagine Ananth Nag in that role.
Source: Muthuraja ondu Muthu written by B.Ganapathi
#16 Behind the Scene of Huttidare Kannada Nadalli song making
It was Dr.Raj Kumar’s residence, Hamsalekha and Nagabharana were working on the songs of the movie ‘Aakasmika.’ Dr.Raj walks to the place in his trademark White Costume and at that moment, Hamsalekha sprouts, “ Huttidare Dr. Rajkumar thara huttbekappa” (If any one is born, they should born like Dr.Rajkumar). This line helped Hamsalaekha to write the legendary Huttidare song for the movie Aakasmika.
#17 Anil Kapoor, Deepika Padukone, Amrish Puri, Naseeruddin Shah, Shakthi Kapoor, Jackie Shroff, Mithun Chakravarthy, Chiranjeevi, Akshay Kumar, Gemini Ganeshan and other Biggies have acted in Kannada Movies
#18 The Famous Classical Singer M.S Subba Lakshmi has played a role in the movie ‘ Krishna Sudhaama’
#19 Gejje Pooje, Sharapanjara, Chakrateertha, Samskara, Uyyala, and Shubha Shastri are few of the Kannada movies to be screened for the first time in International Film Festival held abroad
#20 The first theater of Karnataka is Paramount which was renamed as Parimala Talkies (City Market)
#21 Dr.Raj Kumar is the first Indian actor to have been honored with a Doctorate for acting. He is the only Indian actor to have been awarded the prestigious Kentucky Colonel, by the Kentucky state, USA