The rumour is that Hombale Films has allegedly backed out of Richard Anthony over budget issues
In July 2021, it was revealed that Rakshit Shetty’s ambitious sequel to Ulidavaru Kandanthe, Richard Anthony, which would herald his return to direction, would be backed by Hombale Films as the banner’s 10thproject. The KGF makers had announced a string of collaborations at the time, including a film with Prithviraj Sukumaran (Tyson) and another with Sudha Kongara.
According to the latest, it is being reported that Hombale Films has backed out of this collaboration and that Rakshit is looking at now taking on that responsibility also through his Paramvah Studios to ensure his dream of bringing this story to the big screen comes true. When the news broke, a netizen had tweeted to Rakshit saying that if the development is indeed true, he should go ahead and create his own world with Richard Anthony, which the actor-filmmaker liked. This is as good as affirmation that the news doing the rounds is true after all.
Hombale, according to the buzz, has allegedly pulled the plug on the project at their end owing to budget issues. Considering that the banner had pledged to invest Rs 3000 crore over five years in the film industry, budget issues doesn't make sense, although there could be a question on return on investment. Hombale Films' Dhoomam, Raghavendra Stores failed at the box office, while Salaar was not as big a hit as KGF, failing to make a mark in other south centres, except AP/Telangana. Was Hombale Films not sure of recovering, say, Rs 100 crore, on Rakshit?
A video of Rakshit at a temple seeking the blessings of daiva Koragajja is doing the rounds on social media, in which the actor is told that evil has befallen him and that there will be an attempt to tarnish his name. Rakshit is also told not to fear as he has the blessings and protection of the daiva.
While having Rakshit handle the production of Richard Anthony will give him all the freedom in the world, netizens do feel that it will be too stressful for him as actor, director and producer. In fact, Rakshit has the option of shopping his film to other production houses now and considering the scale he is looking at for Richard Anthony, KVN Productions could be a good bet. KVN had, after all, distributed Rakshit’s latest, Sapta Sagaradaache Ello Side A and Side B.
Now, the team has claimed that Sapta Sagaradaache Ello made 4 times its investment, and if that is indeed true, KVN may not shy away from investing on Rakshit’s film. The actor has a certain market value, after all. He could also do joint ventures with, say Zee Network, which has the satellite rights of SSE, or even collaborate with KRG Studios, which has broken free from Hombale Films, after years of serving as a sister concern.
An official announcement about the route that Rakshit chooses will be made shortly, it’s being heard, what with the actor-filmmaker hoping for a March-April start to filming. In an earlier interview with us, he had said that he’d need at least a year and a half from start to finish to bring Richard Anthony to theatres, so a fag end of 2025 or early 2026 looks like the best bet as of now.