I have now decided to take acting more seriously: Lekha Chandra

"It was my sister’s desire to see me in the world of cinema, and she was the one who encouraged me to take up acting. However, after a few films, I found myself in a dilemma and was experiencing a mix of emotions about whether I should continue in this field. During my break, I realised how much I missed being in front of the camera. Now that I’m back, I’ve decided to take acting seriously and as a profession,” says Lekha Chandra.

The actor, who was last seen in Namo Bhootatma 2, is eagerly anticipating the release of her upcoming film, Fighter, starring Vinod Prabhakar. The film is scheduled to hit theatres on October 6. Directed by Nutan Umesh and also starring Pavana Gowda, the film’s trailer is set to be released on September 31.

Fighter, with Vinod Prabhakar in the lead role, is being promoted as an action entertainer. When asked about her role’s significance in such films, Lekha responds, “Yes, Fighter may give the impression that it’s a hero-centric film with the heroine having little to do. However, in this film, the hero is fighting for a cause, and the plot revolves around us. As the female lead, I bring a twist to the storyline. I deliver most of the dialogues in the film,” says Lekha, adding, “I play the role of a painter, which makes my character vibrant on screen. Overall, the role looks promising and colourful.”

Lekha Chandra, who is increasingly serious about her craft, believes it’s time for her to be recognised as an artiste rather than just a commercial heroine. “Today, content has captured the audience’s attention, and I aim to work on characters that resonate with them.”

In addition to Fighter, Lekha Chandra is also excited about Veera Putra, where she is paired opposite Vijay Surya. “I have another project in the final stages of confirmation and am eagerly awaiting an official announcement from the production end,” she says.

The film is bankrolled by Somashekar Kattigenahalli’s Akash Enterprises and has music composed by Guru Kiran. Fighter also marks the return of yesteryear’s actor, Nirosha, and also consists of Sharath Lohitashwa, and Prathap Kuri, in key roles. 


Actor-producer Siddharth’s Chikku event disrupted by pro-Kannada activists amid Cauvery crisis

Actor-producer Siddharth who was promoting his film Chikku, faced the wrath of the ongoing Cauvery water crisis after pro-Kannada activists disrupted the film’s press conference that took place on Thursday, in Bengaluru.

The film, which is titled Chithha in Tamil, released in theatres on Thursday.

During the press conference, members of the KaRaVe barged inside and disrupted the event. However, as Siddharth continued to address the press in Kannada, and the team took the situation under control, the actor walked off ten minutes later.

The activists also questioned the timing of the event since it was organised by a Tamil actor a day before a bandh was declared by pro-Kannada activists. Urging the actor to express support for the Cauvery protest, the activists insisted that the event should be cancelled in view of the contention of releasing the Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu, and instead emphasise the importance of addressing the issue.

It is to be noted that Karnataka is preparing for a statewide bandh on Friday to protest against releasing Cauvery water to Tamil Nadu. Theatres across Karnataka were set to remain closed until the evening to show their solidarity with the protests.

Chithha/Chikku is produced by Siddharth's Etaki Entertainment, with the Kannada version distributed by KRG Studios. Directed by SU Arun Kumar, Siddharth dubbed for himself for the Kannada version.


Hombale Films to release Salaar and Yuva on the same date

If all had gone as planned, Prabhas’ much-anticipated Salaar, directed by Prashanth Neel, would have graced theatres worldwide today. However, due to unforeseen circumstances, the production house pushed back the release date. Now, the makers are all set to officially announce the release date this weekend.

Meanwhile, our reliable source indicates that the highly-anticipated multilingual project is now slated for a global release on December 22. Interestingly, this also means Salaar will clash with Shahrukh Khan’s
much-awaited Dunki, directed by Rajkumar Hirani.

Incidentally, Hombale Films had also announced December 22 to be the release date of Santhosh Ananddram’s Yuva, which is the launchpad for actor Yuvarajkumar. According to our source, they intend to stick to the release plan. If this holds true, it promises to be a double treat for the Kannada audience, offering them the chance to watch two films – one starring the iconic Prabhas and the other featuring the young talent, Yuvarajkumar coming from the Rajkumar clan. An official announcement this weekend should provide clarity. There’s also speculation that Dhruva Sarja’s Martin may be eyeing the same date. If this pans out, the Christmas season is sure to become a festive cinematic celebration.

Salaar also stars Shruti Haasan, Prithviraj Sukumaran, Jagapathi Babu, Tinnu Anand, Sriya Reddy, and Pramod. The film has Bhuvan Gowda as cameraman and Ravi Basrur scoring the music. On the other hand, Yuvarajkumar’s maiden venture, Yuva stars Sapthami Gowda as the female lead.

Yash 19 to kickstart in November; official announcement to be out soon

After the monumental success of KGF Chapters 1 and 2, Yash laid low for a long time about his next, tentatively known as Yash 19. Slowly, it was revealed that the project will be backed by KVN Productions, and it will be directed by National Award-winning filmmaker Geethu Mohandas.

While an official announcement about the project is yet to be made, Yash is leaving no stone unturned and has diligently been working behind the scenes, orchestrating plans for mounting a multilingual film that will be worth the wait.

Sources reveal that the actor and his team are currently immersed in meticulous preparations and have embarked on an extensive journey to scout for locations. Currently, Yash and his crew are in London for a two-week scouting expedition. Amidst his work, Yash has met renowned Hollywood stunt choreographer and director JJ Perry. The picture shared by the ace choreographer has sent the internet into a frenzy. It is not known if Perry is part of the project.

Apart from London, Yash has also gone to locations like Sri Lanka for the pre-production of the project.

Meanwhile, sources reveal that the project is primed to commence in the month of November. Yash 19 is expected to be a film that will transcend linguistic boundaries, and will potentially make quite a mark in the English-speaking world too, and that the project will be one to remember.

Nirup Bhandari makes a special cameo appearance in Edagaiye Apaghatakke Karana

The shooting for Samarth B Kadkol’s debut directorial film, Edagaiye Apaghatakke Karana, wrapped up on Tuesday, and it has come to light that the movie starring  Diganth in the lead role, will have Nirup Bhandari in a potential role, and the filmmakers refer to his role as a ‘special cameo.’ as they share an exclusive picture featuring Diganth and Nirup.

Gurudatha Ganiga, who has turned from director to producer for this project alongside Samarth and Mohan Hiregoudar, mentioned that Nirup’s role is unique and not a typical special character. It plays a crucial part in the film’s storyline. “We specifically chose Nirup Bhandari for this role and are delighted that he accepted the offer, showing support for a young team,” says Gurudatha.

Edagaiye Apaghatakke Karana, billed as a crime thriller, is centered around left-handed individuals and the challenges they face. The film also introduces Dhanu Harsha as the female lead. The film has music composed by Ajaneesh Lokanath and cinematography is handled by Abhimanyu Sadanadan. Nirup Bhandari also has an upcoming project with Nagathihalli Chandrashekar, and he will be joining the team sometime in October.


Danny Kuttappa: I hope Skanda will be a turning point in my career

Danny Kuttappa, known as the ‘Fiery-eyed’ actor in Kannada cinema, has acted in Telugu films such as Baahubali and Gaddalakonda Ganesh. Now, he is now gearing up for the release of his next project in the language, Skanda. The commercial entertainer directed by Boyapati Srinu and features Ram Pothineni and Sreeleela in the lead and has  Danny Kuttappa, in a prominent role.

Director Boyapati Srinu has reportedly praised the actor’s dedication to his role and the nuances he adds. The filmmaker has also highlighted the importance of delivering even the smallest details. In Skanda, Danny Kuttappa plays a pivotal role and according to the makers, this role could potentially be a turning point in his career.

Having collaborated with both new and experienced talents in the Kannada film industry, Danny Kuttappa emphasises the significance of discussions concerning the portrayal of characters. “I believe that conversations between a director and an actor should not merely revolve around how the role must be played but should also delve into the character itself—how it should be portrayed, and what it aims to achieve. Such in-depth discussions, , can lead to a more profound portrayal of the character on screen,” he says.


Mahalakshmi to make a comeback to silver screen with TRP Rama

The upcoming film TRP Rama marks the return of famous multilingual artiste Mahalakshmi to the silver screen after a hiatus. Commencing her career in the 1980s, she predominantly worked in Kannada cinema while also making notable appearances in Malayalam, Telugu, and Tamil films.

Mahalakshmi's last silver-screen outing was in Anthrangada Mrudanga in 1991, and after nearly thirty two years, she's making a comeback to Kannada cinema. The film's trailer, which was recently unveiled, hints at themes centred around women's exploitation and the crucial role of media.

At the trailer launch, Mahalakshmi passionately emphasised the pivotal role of teamwork in cinema, and having collaborated with actors from diverse linguistic backgrounds throughout her illustrious career. Speaking about the film, the actor shared that  "Hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil" is the theme conveyed through TRP Rama. "The film encapsulates not merely a cinematic endeavour but also a way of life steeped in enduring ethical values that deserve transmission to forthcoming generations."

The film, directed by Ravi Prasad, also has him acting in it. The filmmaker now eagerly awaits the green light from the Censor Board and hopes for an October release. During the trailer launch, Om Sai Prakash, a versatile actor-director spoke about the film's ability to deeply resonate with real-life incidents that tug at the heartstrings—the film's poignant portrayal of pressing societal issues, particularly the nuanced treatment of women.

Actor Sparsha, who is part of the film, believes that her decision to join  TRP Rama was fueled by Mahalakshmi's presence in the project and considers it a privilege to collaborate with legendary luminaries.

TRP Rama, produced under the Ashutosh Pictures banner, features music by Rajguru Hosakote orchestrating, cinematography by Guru Prasad and background score by Rakesh Acharya.

Director Srini and composer Arjun Janya craft multilingual OGM medley in Ghost

Director Srini and composer Arjun Janya have struck the right chord with Shivarajkumar's upcoming film, Ghost. The first track, titled Original Gangster music (OGM), was unveiled on September 23, and it has been trending.

While the audience has heard songs dubbed and released in multiple languages, OGM is a multilingual track, combining lyrics in Kannada, English, Tamil, Telugu, and Malayalam, all in one track.

"We have often released songs dubbed and released in their respective languages, preferring the local dialect. However, in Ghost, we've created a medley with a mix of a few languages, releasing it as a single song, making it a universal track," explains director Srini, adding, "When we release songs dubbed in multiple languages, sometimes they may not sound as good due to differences in native languages and lyrics. By creating one universal song, incorporating all South Indian languages, and maintaining continuity in the respective languages, we ensure a seamless experience, giving a sneak peek into the protagonist role, played by Shivanna."

While Chiranjeevi has penned the lyrics in Kannada, Rajesh has written it in Malayalam, and MG Chetan has taken care of the Tamil and Telugu versions. The latter has also lent his vocals alongside singers Aishwarya Rangarajan and Jithin Raj. "This sequential song enhances the cinematic experience by syncing with the scenes and character development, which will be the case for the rest of the tracks too," says Srini.

Currently, Shivarajkumar, juggling between various projects, is dubbing his portions for Ghost. The multilingual heist thriller made under Sandesh production banner is billed as a duology, with the first part releasing on October 19. The makers are looking to unveil the trailer on September 30, followed by the release of the songs, just in time for the festive season of Dasara.

Ghost, featuring Shivarajkumar in a unique role, also has Bollywood actor Anupam Kher and actor Jayaram making their Kannada debut. The film stars Archana Jois playing a significant role. The cinematography for Ghost is handled by Mahendra Simha.

We researched close to 150 titles before finalising on Marichi: Director Sidhruv

Director Sidhruv's debut film, Marichi, is gearing up for release. With the film in the final stages of post-production, the makers recently released a teaser. The sneak peek piques curiosity with suspenseful and thrilling elements, and introduces the various characters part of the film. While the title is derived from Hindu mythology, Marichi, the son of lord Brahma, features Vijay Raghavendra as an investigative officer on the trail of a dangerous serial killer. Sonu Gowda plays the wife of Vijay's character. The story is said to be inspired by a crime story Sidhruv came across on television, involving an individual who was acquitted of a crime 18 years later courtesy of technology and forensic development.

Talking about the title, director Sidhruv said, "We had 150 titles in front of us, and we carefully chose the right one, specifically looking for a name related to Rishi. That's why we settled on the title Marichi. The title refers to Brahma's son and also known as the father of the demons. In our film, Marichi plays the role of a father figure with a dark past. The story and the entire film has turned out well."

"The dialogue 'Godfather of good and bad' itself creates anticipation about the storyline in everyone's minds, and we aim to deliver that excitement with Marichi," says Vijay Raghavendra, adding, "It's a crime thriller, and the director has entrusted me with a significant role, while he has meticulously selected the cast to ensure they fit their respective roles."

Sonu Gowda expressed her excitement about being part of the film. "My character is well-drawn, and there is ample room for performance in this film. Playing a married couple with Vijay sir onscreen after Happy New Year feels good. The director beautifully portrays emotions in the film."

Apart from Vijay Raghavendra and Sonu Gowda, the film features Abhi, Spandana, Aryaan, Shruti Patil, Gopalakrishna Deshpande, Arun Balraj, and others in prominent roles.

Produced by Sidhruv and Santosh Mapayappa under the SS Rec banner, Marichi features cinematography by Manohar Joshi and music by Judah Sandy. The team plan to release the film in theaters in November.

Alexa locks release date

Jeeva’s upcoming directorial, Alexa, which is centered around the pharmaceutical mafia, is set to hit theatres on November 3. The film features Aditi Prabhudeva and Pawan Tej in lead roles.

In the recently released teaser, we see the introduction of Aditi as a police officer. At the teaser launch, Aditi said, “It was a long-time dream for me to play this role, which has finally been fulfilled. My real-life dream of becoming a police officer didn’t come true, but when the director offered me the role of an investigation officer in this film, I eagerly accepted it. I also dreamt of being an action heroine, which has also become a reality through this film. The action sequences, choreographed by action director Ravi Varma and Mass Mada, have turned out exceptionally well.”

Pawan Tej, who made a special mention of the director’s story, also expressed his enthusiasm for acting alongside Aditi Prabhudeva. Alexa also features Nagaarjuna, Meghashree, Mimicry Gopi, and Chandrakala Mohan in prominent roles.

Produced by V Chandru, Alexa might also have a second instalment. While the film’s music is composed by APO, the cinematography and editing are by Satish B and Umesh R, respectively.