High stakes in Dub-steps

Ever since Prashanth Neel’s period action drama KGF a.k.a Kolar Gold Fields starring Rocking Star Yash announced that it was being made in two different chapters on the lines of the Bahubali series, and that it will be released in five languages (made in Kannada and dubbed into Hindi, Telugu, Tamil and Malayalam), a new trend of such Sandalwood forays into reaching audiences of other languages has kick-started. The latest to join the bandwagon is Krishna directed Pailwaan starring Kichcha Sudeepa which will be released in at least nine languages including Kannada even as it is dubbed in Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Hindi, Marathi, Punjabi, Bhojpuri and Bengali. A few others to be mentioned are Bhairava Geetha which is also releasing in Telugu, and so is Seetharama Kalyana. Bengaluru Chronicle reports.

“There have been several successful and classic Kannada movies which have been remade in other languages but rarely has a film been dubbed and simultaneously released in other languages. The numbers are too low. However, a lot of hit movies are being dubbed in Hindi for television audiences. But this new trend of the most expected and promising Kannada films reaching other audiences and being dubbed and released simultaneously is going to be a game-changer. However, it will have its own effect and soon tougher questions will have to be answered when other industries press for dubbed versions to be released in Kannada as well. As of now, dubbing is yet to be embraced fully in Sandalwood,” says filmmaker Santhosh.

Citing dubbed Kannada movies as a threat, such ventures were banned in Sandalwood since 1962. Though there have been several people resisting it, and a huge hue and cry over the matter, only a handful of dubbed projects have witnessed releases after competent bodies stepped in.

“Times have changed but I think the industry has to take a collective decision on such matters, especially when it comes to allowing dubbing. It definitely has its own pros and cons, and everyone’s interest has to be protected,” said Yash at the KGF film event.

Kannada films now making attempts to expand to other industries and running in other languages is a welcome move for survival. Critic Subramanya adds, “Kannada movies have always faced stiff competition from every other language movies, especially Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Hindi and even English. Now, that good Kannada movies are getting dubbed in other languages, the true potential ability of our industry will also be known, and films can make good business if they are accepted. It will take time to expand on a full scale but the process has begun.”

Director Pavan Wadeyar says that as a creative filmmaker, it is a good development which augurs well for Sandalwood with a bigger market for its creative and most-expected ventures.

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