Rishab Shetty on Kantara’s Success

Kannada film Kantara, directed and headlined by Rishab Shetty, has gained widespread acclaim from critics and audiences alike, including Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, megastar Amitabh Bachchan, and superstar Rajinikanth, among others. Kantara fulfils all the requirements for being an entertainer – from a captivating tale to amazing music in addition to being a visual pleasure. Amid the film’s OTT release on Amazon Prime, Rishab Shetty recently attended the Times Now Summit 2022, engaging in a semi-formal interview with veteran Bollywood actor Anupam Kher and writer Chetan Bhagat, the moderator of the event.

Among the many things the Kantara star talked about in the panel discussion, Rishab primarily highlighted the fact that after the Covid-19 pandemic, the audience was drawn, more towards “rooted stories.” He reasoned that the success of Kantara and Anupam Kher’s The Kashmir Files was the result of the change in preferences among moviegoers. The actor-director also added that most commercial films have western influence, hence they failed to strike a chord with the viewers.

“Commercial films [in Bollywood] have been influenced by Hollywood and western cinema since the 90s. But the rooted stories that regional films show, are what’s appealing to the audience more nowadays. The more regional the story is, the more universal it will become,” opined Rishab. The actor later mentioned that as Kantara was based upon a village setting, even villages across India were able to connect with the film.

The talented actor also shared that he did not let the success of Kantara get to his head. From the moment Kantara received an immense response from the audience to the day it crosses the 400-crore mark at the box office, he has remained rooted to the ground. Rishab further stated that success, according to him was quite dangerous and should never rule his mind.

In the interview, Rishab also lauded Anupam Kher for his film The Kashmir Files, adding the film was a rage in Karanataka because of its heartfelt depiction of Kashmiri Pandits. Speaking on the North and South debate over films, Rishab noted, “It’s not that South cinema is working, Hindi is not working. What would you call The Kashmir Files?”

When Chetan Bhagat asked him about a probable sequel of Kantara, Rishab smiled and swayed his head in disagreement. He said that although Kantara will be released in the Tulu language on December 2, he has not yet thought of Kantara 2 as of yet. In the discussion, Rishab also talked about the many challenges he faced while filming Kantara. Kantara is currently streaming on Amazon Prime from November 24 in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, and Malayalam languages.

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