Sandalwood
Released in 1973, the film was a massive hit and catapulted the actor to stardom.
Digital Native

Fans of the late Kannada superstar Vishnuvardhan are in for a special treat with his all-time classic Nagarahavu getting ready for a re-release on July 20. Released in 1973, the film was bankrolled by N Veerasamy under his banner Eshwari Films. The re-release is now being done by the producer’s sons Balaji and V Ravichandran, a popular actor. The film will be distributed by KRF Studios in Karnataka.

The producers, in an effort to give fans a good viewing experience, will be releasing it in Cinemascope and 7.1 surround sound format. Though Vishnuvardhan made his debut as an actor with Vamshavruksha before Nagarahavu made it to the theatres, it was the latter that put him on the road to stardom. Also, he was credited as Sampath Kumar in Vamshavruksha and appeared with the new screen name Vishnuvardhan only for Nagarahavu.

The film, directed by veteran director Puttanna Kanagal, also marked the entry of actor Ambareesh into the film industry. The star cast also included Aarathi, KS Ashwath and Leelavathi in pivotal roles.

The story revolves around Ramachari, a quick-tempered yet friendly college student, who is unpopular in the whole town and shunned by many in his college due to his anger issues.

The music for the film was composed by Vijaya Bhaskar and Chittibabu had cranked the camera while P Bhakthavathsalam had done the editing. The movie was based on the books Nagarahavu, Ondu Gandu Eradu Hennu and Sarpa Mathsara by writer TR Subba Rao. The screenplay was penned by the director Puttanna Kanagal himself.

It may be mentioned here that the film was so popular among the masses that it was remade in different languages. While it released as Zehreela Insaan in Hindi, it was titled Raaja Naagam in Tamil and Kode Nagu in Telugu.

Nagarahavu went on to win several awards, including the Karnataka State Film Award for Best Actor for Vishnuvardhan.

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(Content provided by Digital Native)