From Darshan’s first big hit, to his most memorable roles and award-winning outings, there are some films you absolutely should watch.
Challenging Star Darshan’s Kaatera is still going strong in theatres, but market dynamics are such that the Tharun Kishore Sudhir film will be headed to OTT shortly. Zee5 Kannada will have the film on its platform as of February 9. While you are waiting for the film in which Darshan plays a blacksmith who is forced to wield the weapons he forges to fight for the rights of the oppressed people in his village, here are a few other movies starring the Challenging Star that we think you ought to see or revisit.
The 2002 action crime thriller directed by PN Satya is the film that not only paved the way for Darshan’s transition to leading man, but also established him as the next big thing in Kannada cinema. The actor played a gangster in the film and was paired with Sparsha Rekha. Majestic had a successful 100-day run in theatres.
Where to watch: Majestic is available to stream on Sun NXT
Darshan’s brother Dinaker directed him in an action heist film inspired by Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs and cast a bunch of second and third generation actors, all of who were sons of villains, like, for instance, Tharun Sudhir, Vinnod Prabhakar, Srujan Lokesh, Dharma Keerthiraj, among others. The film revolves around a plan to steal the Ambari from the Mysore Palace.
Where to watch: Navagraha is available to stream on Sun NXT
Krantiveera Sangoli Rayanna
The Challenging Star has often been vocal about his love for historicals. He won his first state Best Actor award playing a freedom fighter and is supposed to be collaborating with Kaatera maker Tharun Sudhir on the biopic of Sindhura Lakshmana at some point. Krantiveera Sangoli Rayanna had him in the title role as the freedom fighter from Belagavi, who fought the East India company and was later captured and executed.
Where to watch: Krantiveera Sangoli Rayanna is available to stream on Disney+ Hotstar
Dinaker directed his brother yet again in Saarathi, a film whose core plot is inspired from The Lion King. At the time of the film’s release, Darshan was in jail, following a domestic violence case filed by his wife Vijayalakshmi. The Challenging Star’s legal problems, though, were no issue for the film’s performance at the box office and went on to become a big hit.
Where to watch: Saarathi is available to stream on Sun NXT
Director Prem’s directorial debut, Kariya, was a commercial success, but had mixed reviews when it came out. This gangster flick had Darshan playing an assassin for hire, while several of the supporting cast included real-life criminals. Darshan is said to be collaborating yet again with Prem after over two decades in a film to be produced by KVN Productions. This will take off after his current commitment, Devil.
Where to watch: Kariya is available to stream on Sun NXT
Director Om Prakash Rao’s film is, by his own admission, a mish-mash of copied elements from various other language movies, but the final product, Kalasipalya, went on to become a hit. This film too had a gangster backdrop.
Where to watch: Kalasipalya is available to stream on Namma Flix
Namma Preethiya Ramu
The remake of the Malayalam film Vasanthiyum Lakshmiyum Pinne Njaanum, Namma Preethiya Ramu is widely remembered as one of those rare gems that brought Darshan the performer to the fore. The actor played a visually-challenged singer in the film and while people loved his role, the film failed to work at the box office. Considering that audiences have been loving the return of Darshan the performer in Kaatera, it would make sense to revisit this one.
Where to watch: Namma Preethiya Ramu is available to stream on Eros Now
This was Darshan’s first full-fledged collaboration with Tharun Sudhir, after the cameo he did in Chowka. Although it released amid the pandemic, Roberrt was a commercial success. Tharun introduced Miss Supranational Asha Bhat to Kannada cinema with the film.
Where to watch: Amazon Prime Video