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Shakhahaari did not break-even in theatrical run, says director Sandeep Sunkad

The fairly positive response to the Rangayana Raghu-led thriller means that the team will make profit once all the post-theatrical rights are sold

Shakhahaari did not break-even in theatrical run, says director Sandeep Sunkad
Sandeep Sunkad was hell-bent on having Rangayana Raghu in the lead

Last Updated: 08.23 PM, Apr 13, 2024


In the first quarter of 2024, there’ve been very few Kannada films that got good reviews and worked for audiences, even though just under 70 movies made it to theatres. This abundant supply of movies meant that even well-deserving films did not get the right amount of screens/shows and, hence, were not able to reach as many audiences as they’d hoped to. Despite these trying circumstances a few films that boasted good and rather fresh content clicked with audiences and managed to make a fair impact.

One among them was Shakhahaari by debutant director Sandeep Sunkad, a thriller with Rangayana Raghu in the lead, with Gopalkrishna Deshpande in a pivotal role pitted against the former. The film opened to overwhelmingly positive response, but despite that Sandeep says that they’ve not broken even yet. The theatrical run alone was not enough to help them attain that status, he said in an interview with Kannada Filmy Club, but said that they were tantalisingly close.


This means that with all the positive feedback that came for Shakhahaari, it has ensured that the team is in discussion to close the post-theatrical rights deals and while nothing’s finalised yet, if it all comes through, they will be in profit with a sizeable figure.

Shakhahaari, interestingly, released not only along with several other Kannada films, but also with the Malayalam horror survival thriller Bramayugam, which had Mammootty in the lead. The fact that a star like Mammootty was doing a vastly different film and that too in black and white, intrigued audiences, including in Karnataka, which was a challenge. But then Sandeep and team decided to show the film to a bunch of film buffs and the media and capitalize on the positive word-of-mouth publicity from them.

Rangayana Raghu in a still from Shakhahaari
Rangayana Raghu in a still from Shakhahaari

This strategy worked to a fair degree for Shakhahaari, a film in which Rangayana Raghu played a chef whose attempts to shield a convict on the run takes a rather disastrous turn. Gopalkrishna Deshpande played the cop on the hunt of the fugitive.

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