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Monday, November 13, 2000

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Entertainment

Hey Ram: ready to strike gold?


LOOKS LIKE that long winded tale about one man's conversion from ``Musalman hating'' to a mellow understanding of brotherhood and non-violence is going places. `Hey Ram' is the Indian nomination for the Oscars this year.

The Kamal Hassan blockbuster set primarily in pre-Independence India was chosen after a 6-day long trial, while the selection committee viewed nearly 16 films, trying to separate the wheat from the chaff.

And it was no mean battle. The sepia-tints of Hey Ram fought it out, literally scene to scene with other mega flicks like `Mission Kashmir' and `Mohabatein'. And won. Other films that gave Hey Ram a run for its money included the Tabu-starrer `Astitva' and `Bharathi', the story of the poet of Tamil Nadu. `Kushi' and `Sethu' also ran.

The other Hindi movies that did not make it include `Hum Saath Saath Hain' and `Jaanwar', while the Malayalam representations were `Kochu Kochu Santhoshangal' and `Madhura Nombarakattu'. The four Telugu films that competed were `Bhadri', `Chaala Bagundi', `Nelalu' and `Rayalaseema Ramanna Chowdry'.

An eleven member team which constituted the Central Committee appointed by the Film Federation of India met in Chennai and viewed the films between November 6 and 11. The team consisted of Mr. Ajit Bhattacharya, Ms. Anjana Ramesh, Mr. P. K. Bose, Ms. Chitra Lakshmanan, Mr. T. N. Janakiraman, Mr. K. Murari, Mr. N. S. Murthy, Mr. K. Nandagopal Chetty, Ms. Sushma Shironmanee, Mr. B. S. Dwarakiah and Ms. Prabha Pandey.

The group, under the chairmanship of Mr. A. Kothandaramaiah (who is also the president of the South Indian Film Chamber of Commerce) decided on Saturday that Hey Ram had all the makings of an Oscar nomination. Actually more than that. The team has hopes for the movie. Kamal's `Indian' was also nominated from the country for an Oscar.

It is a regular feature for an Indian film to be nominated to the Oscars every year, but so far the closest the country has got to the real Mc Coy event is Manoj Night Shyamalan's non indigenous production, The Sixth Sense.

By Ramya Kannan

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