'Kantara: Chapter 1' teaser reveals Rishab Shetty as a mesmeric, almost superhero-like avatar as he sports a trident and channels his inner Lord Shiva
If Kantara managed to introduce us to the rich and vibrant folklore of coastal Karnataka, 'Kantara Chapter 1', the prequel, is set to make things more immersive and enchanting for cineastes.
Just as promised, Rishab Shetty and Co. are here with the first-look of the new film and have duly released a special video glimpse of the much-awaited instalment. The teaser, as it were, includes Rishab's alluring look in the film which is accentuated by Ajaneesh B. Loknath's score. The first-look glimpse also reveals that the narrative of 'Kantara Chapter 1' will transport us back in time to the 4th or 5th Century AD when the royal family of the Kadambas ruled over North Karnataka and the present-day Uttara Kannada region.
More importantly, 'Kantara Chapter 1' features Rishab in a rather mesmeric, almost superhero-like avatar as he sports a Trishul or a trident and channels his inner Lord Shiva, while exuding a kind of divine or spiritual energy. The promo also suggests quite prominently that the new film will double down on not just the cinematic intensity but also the scale at which it will be executed.
The rest of the cast of 'Kantara Chapter 1' remains undisclosed but Arvind S. Kashyap returns as the cinematographer with Banglan credited as the production designer. Rishab's wife Pragathi Shetty will be the film's costume designer.
Kantara Chapter 1, of course, took off when Rishab Shetty's unassuming 2022 project, Kantara, encountered stellar box office and cultural success during its theatrical run. The film, made at a sub-Rs. 25 crore budget, would go on to gross more than Rs. 400 crores worldwide with the non-Kannada dubbed versions of the film, namely Hindi, Telugu, Tamil and Malayalam, doing exceptionally well.
Rishab Shetty would then be encouraged to work on a new instalment which was later confirmed by Hombale Films, the producers, to be a prequel to the events shown and described in the 2022 film. Hombale, speaking to Deadline, revealed that the new narrative will focus on the deity that features in the early portions of the film, along with additional plot points.
Initially, the prequel project was tentatively titled 'Kantara 2' but the makers later confirmed with a new poster that it will referred to as 'Kantara Chapter 1'. And in all likelihood, Chapter 1 would be followed by at least one or more instalments to extend the 'Kantara' franchise.
Kantara Chapter 1 has been officially launched with the release of the first-look poster and teaser and the latest reports say that the film will go on floors sometime in early 2024, with Sri Lanka and Udupi as the chosen locations for the shoot. More updates to follow