‘Om’ is being re-released yet again, and this time with the state-of-the-art digital and DTS sound technology.
Released first on May 19, 1995, the Shivaraj Kumar starrer has released 550 times in the last 20 years and has run to full houses each time.
In effect, this unmatched magnum opus has been released once every two weeks, a feat unprecedented in the Kannada film history. Here are the highlights of this movie.
1. The Story
Om is the story of a priest’s son who, after a failed love affair, takes to crime and becomes a gangster. This movie pioneered the gangster theme in Kannada films.
Shivaraj Kumar has lived the role of Satya, playing an important part in giving the movie its cult status. Ram Gopal Varma’s 1998 blockbuster ‘Satya’ has similarities with ‘Om’.
2. The Direction
This is the third directorial venture of Real Star Upendra, whose first two movies were smash hits. Upendra used the symbol of ॐ as the name of the movie. His trademark techniques of reverse screenplay, narrating the story in third person and flashbacks within flashbacks are also employed in this movie, which forced audience watch it multiple times to understand it.
Kannada audiences still go gaga over the background music and songs composed by music director Hamsalekha. Of the five songs, two songs sung by veteran actor late Dr. Rajkumar, ‘Om Brahmananda Omkara’ and ‘O Gulabiye’ are ever-fresh, while the other three are sung by Mano, which are equally popular.
4. Casting of real gangsters
Upendra brought in real life gangsters from Bangalore underworld to feature in the movie. Some of the notorious gangsters of 1990s took bail and came out of jail to act in the movie, which created controversy and helped in promoting the movie.
5. Record satellite sale
Produced under Dr. Rajkumar’s home banner, the movie satellite rights were kept unsold for twenty years. According to a news report, it was sold recently for Rs.8 crores amidst heavy competition between TV channels.
The latest release is coming on 12th March with Digital intermediate (DI) and DTS sound technology. It will be releasing in more than 100 theatres across Karnataka.