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Kannada film director Rishab Shetty attempts a 7-in-1 blockbuster

AJ Vinayak Mangaluru | Updated on November 13, 2019 Published on November 13, 2019

With new talents entering the Kannada film industry, the scope for experimenting with new ideas and cinematic styles is increasing these days.

Many a time, a successful moviemaker thinks twice before going beyond his/her genre. Rishab Shetty, who directed hit movies such as Kirik Party and Sarakari Hiriya Prathamika Shaale Kasaragodu: Koduge Ramanna Rai, is now trying with a new concept.

This time he is planning to present an anthology of seven short stories across genres in a single movie. Titled Katha Sangama, this movie has seven directors, seven stories, seven music directors, seven DoP (directors of photography).

In 1976, noted Kannada film director Puttanna Kanagal had attempted such an anthology, also named Katha Sangama, with three different stories.

Rishab’s previous movies as director dealt with different genres. While Kirik Party was a college campus romantic comedy, Sarakari Hiriya touched upon the theme of the closure of a Kannada-medium school in a border town in neighbouring Kerala. Both did well in the box office.

Terming Puttanna Kanagal as a university in filmmaking, in a recent interview to Kairam Vashi, a Kannada film critic, for the YouTube channel of Rishab Shetty Films, Shetty said Puttanna Kanagal contributed a major share to the cult classic movies in Kannada film industry. His venture is a dedication to Kanagal.

Of the seven stories in the movie, one is a story without dialogue. Shetty, and Kannada actor Haripirya and a dog are the only characters in this movie. Directed by Kiran Raj, its filming was done in Tamil Nadu’s Dhanushkodi.

Non-professional actors form the main characters of another story directed by Jai Shankar from the team. It is about a woman from northern Karnataka who comes to stay with her son in Bengaluru. The Kannada dialect of northern Karnataka is the mainstay of this story.

The story directed by Shashi Kumar P is set in Mangaluru with the characters using the Mangaluru Kannada dialect for this. In fact, the main actor for this story, Raj B Shetty, came into limelight with his first movie Ondu Motteya Kathe (which was remade in Hindi as Ujda Chaman). Raj had used the Mangaluru Kannada dialect in it.

Jamadagni Manoj, one of the directors in this project, has chosen a pre-Independence subject set in the 1930s for his story. It is an intense drama happening between two persons. One of them works for the British government in the story.

One of the stories in Katha Sangama uses a conversational drama, bordering on thriller. Directed by Rahul PK, it is about a conversation between two people with opposing ideologies and its aftermath.

Chandrajit Belliappa’s venture as director in this project deals with a father’s love for his daughter. How he fulfils the wishes of his three-year-old daughter is the theme. Kishore, who played the character of Veerasekaran in Rajnikanth’s movie Kabali, plays the role of the father in this story.

Karan Ananth, another director in Katha Sangama, has chosen the story of a 60-year-old man on the verge of retirement. Prakash Belawadi, who played John Abraham’s boss in Jaffna in the movie Madras Café, plays the key role in this story.

Rishab Shetty told the interviewer that of the 15 stories shortlisted, seven were selected for the project. Each of the seven directors listened to the stories of all the others in the team before finalising the project. The script of each story was okayed after getting inputs from all the team members, he said.

Produced by Rishab Shetty Films, HK Prakash and Pradeep NR, the duration of Katha Sangama is around 2.5 hours. Rishab Shetty is the main director of the entire project.

Published on November 13, 2019
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