K.G.F: Chapter 1

K.G.F: Chapter 1 is a 2018 Indian Kannada-language period high voltage action film[6][7] written and directed by Prashanth Neel, and produced by Vijay Kiragandur under the banner Hombale films. It is the first instalment in the two-part series, followed by K.G.F: Chapter 2. The film centres around Raja Krishnappa Bairya "Rocky", born into poverty, who arrives in Bombay (now Mumbai) in the 1960s, on a quest for power and wealth as desired by his dying mother. Involved with the gold mafia there, he is recruited to kill Garuda, the oppressive heir-in-waiting, in Kolar Gold Fields. Yash stars as Rocky, while debutante Ramachandra Raju features as Garuda. Anant Nag narrates the film while also playing a supporting role alongside Srinidhi Shetty, Vasishta N. Simha, Ayyappa P. Sharma and Harish Rai. At the 66th National Film Awards, the film won 2 awards for Best Action and Best Special Effects.[8]

K.G.F: Chapter 1
K.G.F Chapter 1 poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byPrashanth Neel
Produced byVijay Kiragandur
Written byDialogues:
  • Prashanth Neel
  • Chandramouli M
  • Vinay Shivangi
Screenplay byPrashanth Neel
Story byPrashanth Neel
Narrated byAnant Nag
Music byRavi Basrur
CinematographyBhuvan Gowda
Edited byShrikanth
Distributed by
Release date
  • 20 December 2018 (2018-12-20) (United States & Canada)
  • 21 December 2018 (2018-12-21) (India)
Running time
155 minutes[1]
Budget50–80 crore[a]
Box officeest. 243-250 crore[4][5]

The development of the film began in early 2015 when Neel completed writing the screenplay.[9] However, filming began only two years later, in March 2017.[10] Majority of the film is set in Kolar Gold Fields and was filmed on location.[11] Bhuvan Gowda served as the cinematographer and Shrikanth as the editor. Ravi Basrur scored music for the soundtrack and the film's background.[12]

After a North American premiere on 20 December 2018, K.G.F: Chapter 1 was released in Kannada and in dubbed versions of Telugu, Tamil and Malayalam and Hindi languages the following day, and received positive response from audiences.[13] However, critics gave the film mixed reviews; while they praised the cinematography, art direction and the film's score, the screenplay and editing were criticised. The film performed well commercially and collected 76 crore four days into release, in the process breaking the record for the highest grossing Kannada film of all time.[14] The movie was released online by Amazon Prime Video on 5 February 2019[15] which earlier bought the digital rights for ₹18 crores and Colors Kannada bought the satellite rights for an undisclosed record price.[16] The shooting for K.G.F: Chapter 2 began on 13 March 2019.[17]


Journalist Anand Ingalagi's book titled El Dorado , that detailed events at the Kolar Gold Fields between 1951 and present day, has been banned by the Government of India and all published copies burnt. However, a television news channel procures a copy and interviews him circling the events he had cited.

Ingalagi narrates that ore of gold was discovered by commissioned government officials in the southern part of India's Mysore State (in present-day Kolar district, Karnataka) in 1951. Raja Krishnappa "Rocky" Bairya is also born on the day of the discovery in the Mysore region, to a poor and widowed woman. Suryavardhan, a local don who accompanied the officials, kills them. Discerning the increasing demand for gold by the Cold War belligerents, Suryavardhan deceitfully sets up a company, Narachi, in that land, bought for a lease of 99 years under the pretext of mining limestone. He has five associates, all of who operate away from KGF: Kamal, the son of a former associate Bharghav; Rajendra Desai, the father of Reena, Andrews, who oversees operations in the Konkan and Malabar Coasts; Guru Pandian, a powerful politician and president of the DYSS party; and brother Adheera. However, each of them has their eyes on the mines. Andrews' underboss Shetty is a gold smuggler in Bombay, the city that also has another smuggler, Dubai-based Inayat Khalil's eyes set on.

Rocky arrives in Bombay as a ten-year-old on a quest for power and wealth as desired by his dying mother and begins to work for Shetty. He becomes Shetty's right-hand man later and oversees the arrival of gold bars from Africa to the Bombay coast with an iron fist. Rocky soon rises in strength and power rivalling that of Shetty's. This attracts Andrews who offers him Bombay in return for assassinating Garuda, the elder son of Suryavardhan, who is to inherit KGF after his paralysed father's passing. Rocky accepts the offer and heads to Bangalore where an event is staged for the purpose. Once there, he witnesses the sheer presence, authority and power that Garuda commands and has the attempt averted.

In 1978, at the KGF, a bedridden Suryavardhan announces Garuda as his successor overlooking Adheera, who he wants to serve as the former's aide. Garuda's ruthless way of functioning aided by his commander Vanaram comes to fore. Rocky soon makes his way into KGF evading a unit of henchmen. Once there, he witnesses the brutality that the slaves are subjected to. Although apathetic at first, he is moved by a couple of incidents involving a cold-blooded killing of a mother and son at the hands of an overseer and the slaves' children hoping that he rises to liberate them. Beginning his attempt at it and to indicate to Desai and his men through informants, Kulkarni and Garuda's virtuous brother Virat, that he was alive, as planned, Rocky engages in a fight with a unit of twenty-three overseers killing each one of them in order to save a blind slave they were to kill. With the act, Rocky emerges as a hero in the slaves' eyes.

An alerted Vanaram now informs Garuda who heads toward the mines from his palatial residence. To avert thousands of slaves being killed due to his wrath, Virat smothers father Suryavardhan to death and sidetracks Garuda, who rushes back home. At the mines, Rocky seizes the opportunity, conspires and unsuspectingly heads through a tunnel to the site where Garuda has decided to behead three slaves as offerings to a deity. Simultaneously, Vanaram discovers that the third slave to be beheaded is still inside the palace; realization dawns on him that an imposter who plans to kill Garuda has taken his place. Vanaram rushes towards the site of the sacrifice, but he is too late. Upon Garuda's return to the site and sacrifice of two slaves, a concealed Rocky emerges and beheads him. The ecstatic slaves accept him as their leader as they cheer him on. The narrator concludes that Rocky intentionally chose KGF as the site to assassinate Garuda, in order to earn the will of an "army of people", the slaves, before he seized KGF to his control but still there are people who are waiting to acquire the throne and how Rocky will face them as one man army and why he was given a death warrant by Prime Minister Ramika Sen will be shown in Chapter 2.


  • Yash as Raja "Rocky Bhai" Krishnappa Bhairya[18]
    • Anmol Vijay as young Rocky[19]
  • Srinidhi Shetty as Reena Desai
  • Archana Jois as Shanthamma, Rocky's mother[20]
  • Anant Nag as Anand Ingalagi
    • Ashok Sharma as young Anand Ingalagi
  • Ramesh Indira as Suryavardhan
  • Ramachandra Raju as Garuda
  • Vinay Bidappa as Virat
  • Lakki Lakshman as Rajendra Desai
  • Vasishta N. Simha as Kamal
  • Achyuth Kumar as Guru Pandian
  • B. S. Avinash as Andrews
  • Tharak Ponnappa as Daya, Andrews' aide
  • Dinesh Mangaluru as Shetty
  • Harish Rai as Khasim, Shetty's aide and Rocky's confidante
  • Balakrishna as Inayat Khalil
  • T. S. Nagabharana as the owner of television news channel 24/News
  • Malavika Avinash as Deepa Hegde, the chief editor of 24/News
  • Govinda Gowda as a peon at 24/News
  • Mohan Juneja as Nagaraju, an informer to Ingalagi
  • Ayyappa P. Sharma as Vanaram, commander for KGF
  • John Kokken as John, an overseer at KGF
  • Puneeth Rudranag as Rugga, an overseer at mines
  • Neenasam Ashwath as Kulkarni
  • B. Suresha as Vittal, a slave at KGF
  • T. N. Srinivas Murthy as Narayan, a slave at KGF
  • Lakshmipathi as Kencha, a slave at KGF, the storyteller
  • Roopa Rayappa as Shanthi, a slave at KGF
  • Sampath Maitreya as Shanti's Husband
  • Yashwant Shetty
  • Shambavi Venkatesh
  • Tamannaah as Milky in a special appearance for an item number "Jokae"
Hindi dubbed version


The art director Shivakumar recreated the Kolar Gold Fields film set of the 80s and VFX was used as an extension.[22]

As of 25 June 2017, the project was 50 per cent complete and production had restarted after sets were rebuilt following their destruction by heavy rains.[23]

KGF was released in five languages. It is a complete period drama and is set in the 70s and early 80s. Yash grew his beard and long hair for his role as Rocky, a slick and a suave person of the 70s era. Apart from Yash and Srinidhi, some of the Kannada actors include Ananthnag, Malavika Avinash, Achyuth Kumar, Vasishta N. Simha[24] and B Suresha. Ramya Krishna and Nassar were falsely reported to be a part of the film.[25]

The teaser of KGF was released on Yash's birthday, 8 January 2018. The trailer was released on 9 November 2018.[26][27][28] It also had inspiration from action movies and western movies[29] like The Good, the Bad and the Ugly and For a Few Dollars More.[30]


Ravi Basrur composed the soundtrack album and the film's score, while Tanishk Bagchi remastered the track "Gali Gali" from Tridev (1989) for the film's Hindi version, and D. Imman composed the karaoke versions of the songs.[31] The audio rights of the film were purchased by Lahari Music in Kannada, Tamil, Telugu and Malayalam for 3.6 crore, a record sum for any South Indian film, except the Hindi version which was bought by T-Series.[32] All the songs were released as singles, and all versions of the first track of the album "Salaam Rocky Bhai", was released on 4 December 2018, except the Hindi version which was released on 7 December 2018.[33]

The complete soundtrack album of the film was released on 19 December 2018, in all South Indian languages and the soundtrack for the Hindi version was released on 26 December 2018. The karaoke versions of the songs were released on 9 January 2019. The film's score was released in two volumes. Volume 1 was released on 10 September 2019, and second volume was released on 12 October 2019.


K.G.F: Chapter 1 received a U/A certificate from the Central Board of Film Certification in early December 2018.[34][35] The distribution rights for the Kannada version were bought by KRG Studios, a sister company of the film's studio Hombale Films. While Excel Entertainment and AA Films bought rights for the Hindi version, the Tamil version's rights were sold to Vishal Film Factory, Telugu to Vaaraahi Chalana Chitram and Malayalam to Global United Media.[36][37] The film was released in the U.S. and Canada on 20 December 2018 and in India the following day.[38] The day also saw releases in parts of Africa, Hong Kong and parts of Eastern Europe including Cyprus, the first in these regions for a Kannada film.[39] It was reported that the film would be released in 1,800–2,200 screens worldwide, the widest ever release for a Kannada film.[40][41][42] However, it was later reported that the film was released in 2,460 screens, that included 1,500 for the Hindi version, 400 each for Kannada and Telugu, 100 for Tamil and 60 for Malayalam.[43] The Hindi-dubbed version of the film was released in 71 screens in Pakistan on 11 January and became the first Kannada film to be released there, although Lucia (2013) was screened at film festivals and did not see a theatrical release in the country.[44][45]


Critical receptionEdit

K.G.F: Chapter 1 received positive response from audiences while critics gave the film mixed reviews.[46] While its cinematography, art direction, narration, stunt sequences, background score and acting performances received acclamation, critics had mixed comments about the screenplay, dialogues and editing.[47]

Reviewing for Deccan Herald, Vivek M. V. felt that the "grandeur" lay in the film's "fantastically gripping story". He wrote praises of the film's narration, its "brilliant" editing and "riveting sequences".[48] Sunayana Suresh of The Times of India gave the film rating of three-and-a-half out of five and wrote that it had a "fast-paced first half ... but the second half and the climax sets up the right premise for the second part of the film." She called the screenplay narrated in a "non-linear" fashion the "most interesting part of the film". She commended the performance as Yash in that he "lives his character to the fullest".[49] Troy Ribeiro of News18 echoed her sentiment and wrote, "Yash's endurance, strife and sincerity ... get projected as perfunctory" in the context of "tight close-ups and mid-shots the camera stops us from getting emotionally connected to" every actor in the film. He further wrote, "With intense atmospheric lighting, every frame in the film looks aesthetic and natural. Brilliant cinematography and equally challenging action sequences are put together with razor-sharp edits. They give the film a racy pace."[50] The reviewer for Hindustan Times, Priyanka Sundar, called the film a "story of greed and redemption" and remarked that it "burns bright". While praising the "promising" background score, "sharp" editing and "stunning" visuals, she felt that the screenplay could have been "tighter".[51]

Janani K. of India Today felt the film was "dragged and over-stretched" and gave it a three out of five-star rating. While she commended Yash's "extraordinary performance" and the "brilliantly choreographed stunt sequences", she wrote that despite having "universal theme, [the film] gets lost in translation, thanks to sloppy editing and atrocious dialogues."[52] Subha J. Rao of Firstpost gave the film a similar rating and praised the film's music, cinematography and art direction; particularly the latter in "bringing alive the grime and heat of the gold mines". However, she felt "[t]ighter editing ... would have smoothened out the kinks" in the film.[53] Shashiprasad S. M. of Deccan Chronicle scored the film a two-and-a-half out of five star rating and described the film as "a visual spectacle". Barring that, he felt it fell short of "instilling the much-needed life into it."[54] Karthik Keramalu of Film Companion felt that the film fell short "becoming a great movie by a long mile". He dismissed the dialogues delivered by Yash's character as "lengthy sermon about his own valour", while also criticizing the film's editing.[55]

Excepting what he described the film's climax as "spectacular with the support of a brilliant cast" and "spot on" sets and location, Muralidhara Khajane of The Hindu felt there was "nothing in the film that we have not seen before". While writing that "[t]here is a certain finesse to the edgy, moody cinematography", he concluded that the film lacked a "soul, a believable story and a rounded protagonist."[56] Manoj Kumar R. of The Indian Express scored the film two-and-a-half out of five stars and deemed it "[a]n overstretched exercise in hero worship". While drawing comparisons of certain scenes to those from Baahubali, he felt the film had a "flimsy storyline", which he added is made up for by "terrific background orchestra".[57] Also writing for the same news publication, Shubhra Gupta drew comparisons of the film in plot to those of Nayakan, Deewaar, Parinda in its first half. She felt that the film had "nothing more" than "striking cinematography, and the brown and sepia colours which suffuse the screen".[58]

The character of Rocky was well received by critics. Janani K of India Today said that "You take a look at [Rocky] and instantly you know that this guy will do the impossible and pull people out of their misery."[59] Sunaina Suresh of Times of India said that "The growth of Rocky is shown steadily and the makers kept a clever story telling pattern right through, that keeps pace with the narrative." And further added that "The first chapter shows Rocky as the maverick mastermind who will stop at nothing in order to achieve his mission."[60] Troy Ribeiro of News 18 said that "Rocky is the new Superhero in the town."[61]

Box officeEdit

KGF: Chapter 1 on the first day of its release collected ₹25 crore worldwide, which was the highest opening in the Kannada film industry, In Karnataka's capital, Bengaluru, the film earned about ₹5 crore on day 1.[62] First weekend collections stood around ₹60 crore worldwide from all its versions.[63] The film grossed around ₹113 crore worldwide in the first week of its release, becoming the first Kannada film to cross ₹100 crore,[64] then it grossed over ₹250 crores in 50 days, becoming the first Kannada movie to gross over 200 crores.[5]


  • With a collection of 134 crores in its home state, it became the highest grossing movie in Karnataka at the time breaking the records of Baahubali 2: The Conclusion.[65][66] K.G.F: Chapter 1, completed its theatrical run over 100-days in couple of centres of Karnataka.[67]


Year Ceremony Category Recipient(s) and nominee(s) Result Ref.
2018 Karnataka State Film Awards Best Music Director Ravi Basrur Won [71]
Best Art Director Shiva Kumar K Won
2019 Zee Kannada Hemmeya Kanndiga Awards Best Film K.G.F Won [72]
Best Director Prashanth Neel Won
Best Actor Yash Won
Best Cinematographer Bhuvan Gowda Won
Best Music Director Ravi Basrur Won
Best Villain Ramachandra Raju Won
Best Lyrisist Nagendra Prasad Won
Voice Of The Year Vijay Prakash Won
2019 66th National Film Awards Best Special Effects Unifi Media Won [73]
Best Stunt Choreographer Vikram More, Anbariv Won
2019 SIIMA Awards Best Film K.G.F Won [74][75]
Best Actor Yash Won
Pantaloons style icon male of the year Yash Won
Best Director Prashanth Neel Won
Best Actor in a Negative Role Ramachandra Raju Nominated
Best Debut Actress Srinidhi Shetty Nominated
Best Supporting Actress Archana Jois Won
Best Cinematographer Bhuvan Gowda Won
Best Music Ravi Basrur Won
Best Supporting actor - Male Achyuth Kumar Won
Best Playback Singer - Male Vijay Prakash Won
2019 Filmfare Awards South Best Film – Kannada K.G.F: Chapter 1 Won [76]
Best Director – Kannada Prashanth Neel Nominated
Best Actor – Kannada Yash Won
Best Music Director – Kannada Ravi Basrur Nominated
Best Female Debut Srinidhi Shetty Nominated

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Hindustan Times reported the budget as 50 crore[2] whereas Business Today had an 80 crore estimate.[3]


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  2. ^ "Shah Rukh Khan's Zero beaten at the box office by Kannada film KGF in photo finish". Hindustan Times. 25 December 2018.
  3. ^ "KGF Box Office Collection Day 6: Hindi version of Yash's movie picks up pace as SRK's Zero slows down". Business Today. 27 December 2018.
  4. ^ "Kannada Cinema's Pride! Yash starrer KGF collects Rs 243.10 crore at the worldwide box office in 50 days; will it make Rs 250 crore? - Entertainment News". www.timesnownews.com.
  5. ^ a b c "Yash's film KGF: Chapter 1 made Rs 250 crore at the box office worldwide and became a magnum-opus. Now, the makers are busy with pre-production work of KGF: Chapter 2.", indiatoday, 9 February 2019
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  12. ^ Kumar, Hemanth (16 December 2018). "KGF: Chapter 1 — Yash, director Prashanth Neel on their upcoming film, and taking cues from SS Rajamouli". Firstpost. Retrieved 25 December 2018.
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  14. ^ "ಕೆಜಿಎಫ್ ಭರ್ಜರಿ ಕಲೆಕ್ಷನ್: 4ನೇ ದಿನಕ್ಕೆ 75 ಕೋಟಿ, ಕನ್ನಡದ ಮಟ್ಟಿಗೆ ಹೊಸ ದಾಖಲೆ!" [KGF Largest Collection: Rs 75 Crore on 4th Day, New Record for Kannada!] (in Kannada). 25 December 2018. Retrieved 25 December 2018.
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  63. ^ KGF box office collection day 3 total: Yash starrer earns whopping Rs 59.6 crore! Looks set to break records via zeebiz – https://www.zeebiz.com/india/photo-gallery-kgf-box-office-collection-day-3-worldwide-another-record-smashed-yash-srinidhi-starrer-makes-most-of-christmas-mood-77219
  64. ^ KGF box office collection Day 7: Yash-starrer inches towards Rs 150-crore mark – Movies News – https://www.indiatoday.in/movies/regional-cinema/story/kgf-box-office-collection-day-7-yash-starrer-inches-towards-rs-150-crore-mark-1418731-2018-12-28
  65. ^ https://www.timesnownews.com/amp/entertainment/box-office/article/yashs-kgf-tops-karnataka-box-office-beating-baahubali-2-goes-past-rs-240-crore-mark-globally-in-just-40-days/358478
  66. ^ https://menglish.sakshi.com/amp/entertainment/2019/02/04/kgf-day-42-collections-yash-overtakes-prabhas-beats-baahubali-record
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