Om (1995 film)

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1995 Kannada film Om poster.jpg
Theatrical re-release poster
Directed by Upendra
Produced by Parvathamma Rajkumar
Screenplay by Upendra
Story by Upendra
Starring Shivarajkumar
Music by Hamsalekha
Cinematography B. C. Gowrishankar
Edited by Shashikumar
Poornima Enterprises
Distributed by Sri Vajreshwari Combines
Release date
19 May 1995 (1995-05-19)
Running time
150 minutes
Country India
Language Kannada
Budget 1.2 crore (US$190,000)

Om (Kannada: ಓಂ), stylized as , is an 1995 Indian Kannada crime drama film written and directed by Upendra. The film was produced by Parvathamma Rajkumar under the production company Sri Vajreshwari Combines. The film stars Shivarajkumar and Prema in lead roles with Srishanthi, G. V. Shivanand, Sadhu Kokila and along with real life gangsters Bekkina Kannu Rajendra, Tanveer, Korangu Krishna, Jedaralli Krishnappa portraying supporting roles.[1]

The film was notable for its exposure of Bengaluru's criminal underworld. The film's plot revolves around Satya, son of a priest who becomes a gangster after his lover framed him in a murder. Rest of the film is about Satya leaving the rowdyism. The soundtrack was composed by Hamsalekha who also wrote the lyrics for all songs. B. C. Gowrishankar and Shashikumar handled cinematography and editing respectively.[1]

Om was remade in Telugu as Omkaram (1997) starring Dr.Rajshekar and Prema which was also directed by Upendra. The movie was unofficially remade in Hindi as Arjun Pandit.[2]Bollywood's 1998 blockbuster Satya shares many similarities with Om, including the fact that both deal with criminal underworlds and each protagonist's name is the same: Satya. The film became a successful venture at the box office. It remains a cult classic Indian film, following among audience owing to its re-release every two weeks and this film has a world record of re-releasing more than 550 times and completing 100 days on more than 75+ re-releases which is an all-time world record[3]


The movie begins with a reporter writing articles about underworld dons and the reasons why people enter the underworld and practice rowdyism. The movie revolves around the main character Satya (Shivarajkumar), a son of a priest who turns into a rowdy for love. But the same love brings him back into being a civilized person. But there are twists involved in the movie as to why he is provoked to turn into a rowdy, how he is rejected by his family and relatives and also the girl for whom he had to become a rowdy in the first place and many other events which are the key scenes to watch for in the movie.


  • Shivarajkumar as Satyamurthy
  • Prema as Madhuri
  • Srishanthi as Shashi
  • G. V. Shivanand as Madhu's Father
  • Upasane Seetharam as Satya's Father
  • Honnavalli Krishna
  • Sadhu Kokila as Shankar
  • V. Manohar as Chennakeshava, Editor-in-chief of Krantiveera
  • Bekkina Kannu Rajendra as himself
  • Tanveer as himself
  • Korangu Krishna as himself
  • Jedaralli Krishnappa as himself
  • Srirampura Kitty as himself
  • Koli Fayaz as himself
  • Vanishree as Satyamurthy's sister



Speaking on a talk show, Weekend with Ramesh in 2014, on how he developed the story for Om, Upendra said he wrote a part of the story during his days in college in the late-1980s. Purushottam, a friend of Upendra, brought to him a letter written by someone that caught his attention. Drawing inspiration from it, he drafted the first part of the story, that he subsequently developed, although incompletely. He also revealed that had always wanted make a film on organized crime and mafia, based on real-life incidents.[4] He said he was "disappointed" on learning that the screenplay of 1989 film Siva had a similar storyline to what he had written.[5] He began working as a dialogue writer and songwriter in Kannada cinema during the time, and the first half of the 1990s saw him direct two films, Tharle Nan Maga (1992) and Shhh! (1993). Alongside, he developed the storyline and wrote a screenplay with the plot taking sequences of flashback, which he said "took another form" at the end of completion.[4]


Having given the film a working title as Satya, Upendra initially decided to cast Kumar Govind as the eponymous lead, who he had previously collaborated with, in Shhh!.[6] However, later, eager to cast Shiva Rajkumar in the role, Upendra approached actor Honnavalli Krishna in 1994, and persuaded him to speak the matter over to Shiva's father and actor, Rajkumar. Krishna spoke to S. P. Varadappa, Rajkumar's brother, who invited Upendra and him over to their house in Bangalore. Impressed by the story narrated by Upendra in a span of ten minutes using newspaper cuttings of oil mafia to elaborate on the subject, Rajkumar gave the go-ahead and Shiva was signed as the male lead. Rajkumar also agreed to produce the film and handed an amount of 50,000 over to Upendra the same day.[4] Shiva had till then portrayed roles predominantly of a romantic hero in his then career of 8 years. Speaking on casting him, Upendra said he was drawn by Shiva's "powerful brownish-shaded eyes" and wanted to "make full use of it".[4] Many actresses had been speculated to play the role of the female lead Madhuri, in the film, including then popular Hindi film actress Juhi Chawla. Finally, on Rajkumar's approval, Prema, a newcomer then, who was already filming with Shiva in Savyasachi, was cast in the role.[7] Real-life gangsters Bekkinakannu Rajendra, Korangu Krishna, Tanveer Ahmad and Jedarahalli Krishna made cameo appearances in the film.[8]


The principal photography took place on 7 December 1994 in Bangalore. On the day, Rajkumar wrote the spiritual icon "ॐ" on the film's screenplay material using kumkuma, which was later made the title design for the film.[9] B. C. Gowrishankar who handled cinematography used a warm, yellow tone and employed filters throughout the film.[10][11]


Soundtrack album by Hamsalekha
Genre Feature film soundtrack
Length 24:28
Label Magnasound

Hamsalekha composed the film score and the film's soundtrack, also writing its lyrics.[12] In September 2015, the rights for the soundtrack album was acquired by Sony Music Entertainment, and was released digitally.[13] All the songs including "Hey Dinakara" and "O Gulabiye" were well received and became chartbusters.[14]

Track list
No. Title Lyrics Singer(s) Length
1. "Hey Dinakara" Hamsalekha Rajkumar 5:08
2. "College Kumaru" Hamsalekha Mano 5:07
3. "Mehabooba" Hamsalekha Mano 4:58
4. "O Gulaabiye" Hamsalekha Rajkumar 4:58
5. "Amruthavanthe Premada" Hamsalekha Mano 4:17
Total length: 24:28


Re release[edit]

As of March 2015, Om had been re-released over 632 times and in over 400 theatres across Karnataka.[15] On 12 March 2015, the film was re-released with Digital intermediate and DTS for the first time in over 100 theatres.[16] It was distributed by Kishore Films.[17][18]

Home Media[edit]

Even though the film was released in 1995, its satellite and TV rights was sold to Udaya TV in 2015 for a sum of 10 crores, including the TV rights of Vinay Rajkumar starrer Siddhartha (2015) (which is not officially confirmed by Raghavendra Rajkumar or Poornima enterprises who owned the rights). It was telecast on 15 August 2015.[19] The amount is the highest for any Kannada film considering that the film is already 20 years old and has been released hundreds of times.[20] Video rights was sold to Sri Ganesh Video.[21][22]


1995–96 Karnataka State Film Awards
43rd Filmfare Awards South


Om attained cult status in Kannada cinema. It became a trendsetter in the genre of films based on gangsters.[23] Shivarajkumar went on to be typecasted portraying similar roles in later films like Jogi (2005) and Hatrick Hodi Maga (2009).[24][10] Rediff in its review of Darshan starrer Shastri (2005) called it "poor imitation of the trendsetting Kannada film, Om".[25] Murali Mohan who worked as an assistant in Om made his directorial debut with Santha (2007) which had a similar plot.[26]

In 1999, the film was unofficially remade in Hindi as Arjun Pandit (1999) by Rahul Rawail which stars Sunny Deol and Juhi Chawla in leading roles was criticized by film viewers by deactivating the story line.[27]


  1. ^ a b "Om – ಓಂ (1995/೧೯೯೫)". Kannada Movies Info. 2013-08-06. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ a b c d Upendra (21 September 2014). Weekend With Ramesh — Episode 16 - September 21, 2014 (in Kannada). Zee Kannada. Retrieved 23 September 2015. 
  5. ^ "The Hindu : Entertainment Bangalore : Uppi's hardly uppity". 2016-04-20. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  6. ^ Sharadhaa A. (10 March 2015). "The Magic of Om Continues". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 13 March 2015. 
  7. ^ Prema (6 July 2010). Kannada Actor Prema Film Lifes Journey (in Kannada). TV9 Kannada. Retrieved 23 September 2015. 
  8. ^ Rai, Saritha (30 June 1995). "Art imitates underworld life in Kannada film OM". India Today. Retrieved 28 October 2015. 
  9. ^ OM 'Sathya' Kathe: Unknown Facts About 'OM' Kannada Movie (in Kannada). TV9 Kannada. 2 January 2015. Retrieved 4 October 2015. 
  10. ^ a b "It's Still Young — The Hindu". The Hindu. S. Shivakumar. Retrieved 27 October 2015. 
  11. ^ "Camera was his magic wand". Deccan Herald. S. N. Deepak. Retrieved 27 October 2015. 
  12. ^ "Om (1995)". 6 August 2013. Retrieved 13 March 2015. 
  13. ^ "Om (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) - EP". iTunes. Retrieved 13 September 2015. 
  14. ^ "The best songs of Rajkumar". Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  15. ^ "Shivarajkumar sets a new record!". The Times of India. 9 March 2015. Retrieved 13 March 2015. 
  16. ^ "Re-releasing movies- an emerging trend in Sandalwood". Sify. Moviebuzz. Retrieved 28 October 2015. 
  17. ^ User, Super. "OM 550 Releases In 20 Years - Exclusive - | Kannada Movie News, Reviews | Image". Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  18. ^ "OM still chanting - Bangalore Mirror -". Bangalore Mirror. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  19. ^ "Om satellite rights sold.". The Times of India. 5 August 2015. Retrieved 5 August 2015. 
  20. ^ "OM in udaya tv". Indiaglitz. Retrieved 28 October 2015. 
  21. ^ "Shivarajkumar's Om now out on DVD". Times of India. Retrieved 15 October 2015. 
  22. ^ "Om arrives on DVD". Bangalore Mirror. Retrieved 15 October 2015. 
  23. ^ "Song sounds like a sword". Bangalore Mirror. Retrieved 15 October 2015. 
  24. ^ "Hatrick Hodi Maga is bad". Rediff. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  25. ^ "Shashtri: Badly made, poorly directed". Rediff. Retrieved 2016-10-14. 
  26. ^
  27. ^ "Rediff On The NeT, Movies: Dumb and dumber". Retrieved 2016-10-14. 

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