‘Kannada Chalanachitra Ithihasa’, ‘Chandanavana’ to be released to mark 80 years of Kannada cinema

Kannada Chalanachitra Ithihasa, the 1,600-page, two-volume work on the history of Kannada cinema, which was withdrawn from public circulation 11 years ago following a controversy, will see light of the day shortly.

According to B.N. Vijaya Kumar, president of the Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce (KFCC), a committee will be formed shortly to “correct any wrong information, factual errors or misinterpretation” in the two volumes and bring out the “monumental” work, which will be an encyclopaedia on the 65 years of the Kannada cinema.

He told The Hindu that the committee comprising writer Vijayamma, journalist Gangadhar Mudaliar, Vice-Chancellor of Kannada University, Hampi, H.C. Boralingaiah, and former presidents of the KFCC Jaimala, K.V. Chandrashekar and Sa. Ra. Govindu , headed by writer Baraguru Ramachandrappa, would be formed by Monday.

“The KFCC is interested in bringing out Kannada Chalanachitra Ithihasa to help those who want an in-depth understanding of the Kannada film industry,” he said.

The two-volume work was brought out by the Kannada University in association with the Karnataka Chalanachitra Patrakartara Parishat, with financial assistance from KFCC and the Karnataka government in 2002.

It got embroiled in controversy soon after its release as a section of the film industry expressed discontentment over “wrong information, factual errors and misinterpretation” in it. The university stopped its sale and agreed to appoint an expert committee to look into the matter and correct the errors.

Recent history

While attempts are being made to re-release Kannada Chalanachitra Ithihasa, which covers the path tread by the Kannada cinema from 1934 to 2000, Karnataka Chalanachitra Academy (KCA) is all set to release Chandanavana , which chronicles events in the industry from 2000-2010.

Though Chandanavana is almost ready for launch, the KCA has decided to release it along with Kannada Chalanachitra Ithihasa to mark 80 years of Kannada cinema, according to sources in the academy.

Chandanavana is the brainchild of the former KCA chairman T.S. Nagabharana. In fact, he tried to take over the rights of Kannada Chalanachitra Ithihasa from the Kannada University and rework it.

However, when his attempts failed, he decided to bring out Chandanavana to chronicle the milestones in the industry from 2000-2010 with a chapter on the 75 years of the Kannada film industry.

Mr. Nagabharana told The Hindu that a four-member editorial committee comprising senior film journalists Shyamasundara Kulkarni, C.H. Raghunath, N. Vishakha and Chetan Nadiger was formed to work on Chandanavana. “The 700-page volume was supposed to be released in 2011. But the release was postponed for technical reasons,” he said.

“It was a challenge to record the recent history [of the Kannada film industry] in view of the enormous number of films released compared to the Nineties,” said Mr. Nadiger.

The volume has over 15 chapters dedicated to every wing of the film industry and important events in the 10 years, besides information on over 1,500 films.

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