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Kaiva: How a mortuary visit during Bell Bottom shoot inspired Jayatheertha Jayanna

Jayatheertha Jayanna talks about the time he went looking for maggots and how he stumbled upon a rather fascinating story

Kaiva: How a mortuary visit during Bell Bottom shoot inspired Jayatheertha Jayanna
Jayatheertha Jayanna on the genesis of 'Kaiva'

Last Updated: 09.34 PM, Nov 14, 2023


With Kaiva, Jayatheertha Jayanna has added another intriguing title to his already eclectic filmography, which consists of retro comedy-crime capers like 'Bell Bottom' and sci-fi love stories like 'Banaras' to Leo Tolstoy-inspired thrillers like 'Tony'. 

Kaiva, whose action teaser was released very recently, is a distinct period action entertainer which also boasts a strong love story. The same teaser also suggests that the film is a bit of a departure for the filmmaker who has never tried his hand at high-octane action before. But going by the brief description we have of its narrative, we can expect something unique to come out of this experiment. What's more fascinating, though, is how Jayatheertha landed at the heart of the story.

At the teaser launch event, the filmmaker revealed that it was during the shoot of the Rishab Shetty starrer Bell Bottom at Bangalore Medical College that the central idea or story of Kaiva came to him. "There's a sequence in Bell Bottom including maggots and when I went to the medical college's mortuary to collect a few of those insects, I saw a person perform a post-mortem procedure. That's how I got this (Kaiva) story," said Jayatheertha. He would add that the said person would recount a brutal murder that took place in the year 1983 and also the love story behind the crime, revealing that the entire episode from the past inspired him to turn it into a film.

"Aside from that real incident, the film is also about how Karaga (iconic annual festival or ritual performed in central Bengaluru) becomes the occasion for a love story to bloom," added Jayatheertha. 


One of the most unusual yet endearing features of the Karaga ritual is that the procession visits the tomb of an 18th-century Muslim saint or the Dargah. "It is during this visit in the year 1983 that the said love story blossoms," said Jayatheertha, before revealing that his screenplay also includes another major incident that took place in Bengaluru in 1983. "I began working on a screenplay by connecting these two events," he adds.

Of course, the other major incident he refers to is the collapse of the seven-storeyed Gangaram building, which was located next to Kapali Theatre in central Bengaluru. Among those who unfortunately passed due to the collapse were two people who were watching a matinee show at the cinema hall.

The cast of 'Kaiva' includes Dhanveerrah, Megha Shetty, Dinakar Thoogudeepa, Jayaram Karthik (JK), Nanda Gopal, Ugram Manju, Raghu Shivamogga, Ramesh Indira and others.

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