HISTORY MADE! Konkani Film ‘OSMITAY’ from Kodiyal reaches a Milestone of 100 Show days in Karnataka’s Konkani Film Industry
Mangaluru: Konkani is a language spoken by some 2.5 million people, mainly along the central part of India’s west coast, known as the Konkan coast. It is the official language of the state of Goa and is spoken by many residents of Mangaluru, a coastal city in Karnataka state. It has been spoken by people in the region, including Hindus of all castes, Christians and Muslims, for at least eight centuries; the first known Konkani inscription dates to 1187. Set against the backdrop of the Konkani people’s quest for identity, “OSMITAY’ a Konkani Film was created, and the captivating story unfolds the narrative of migration from Goa and showcases the visual splendour of Konkani’s rich folk heritage, all woven into a tender love story penned by 72-year-old Eric Ozario Ozario, who is also one of the film’s music composers; with added masala to the screenplay and dialogues written by Joel Pereira.
Vilas Ratnakar Kshatriya has Directed the Movie and editing was done by Mavin Joel Pinto. Market Bird and Comedy Company were in charge of promotion and have worked hard to bring this film to the people through innovative concepts. Alwyn Fernandes, Cajitan Dias, Joel Pereira, and Eric Ozario composed the melodious music for the six songs, featuring famous singers like Nihal Tauro, Joyce Ozario, Dealle D’Souza, Vaibhav Kamat and others. Denis Monteiro, Ashwin D’Costa, Ms Wencita Dias, Prince Jacob, Saish Panandikar, Gaurish Vernekar, Stany Alvares, Nellu Permannur, Sunil Siddi, Lulu Fortes, Naveen Lobo and other famous artists from Goa and Mangalore are playing important roles. About 500 other artists have appeared in front of the camera for the first time. Mandd Sobhann produced this film with the cooperation of people and donors, and President Louis J. Pinto is in charge of production and screenings.
The scenic beauty of the coast, hills, and Goa is captured by cinematographer Balaraja Gowda and edited by Mavin Joel Pinto.” Produced by Mandd Sobhann, a leading cultural organization in the Guinness World Records for Konkani, with the mission of promoting the Konkani film movement, the film ‘Osmitay’ hit the screens on 15 September 2023, since then having been released in various regions, including Mangaluru, Udupi, Uttara Kannada, Mysuru;, Kerala, Ahmedabad, Mumbai and U.A.E., Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, England, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, America, Germany, and more. Moving along the thread of the Konkani people’s search for identity, the story depicts migration from Goa and the visual splendour of Konkani’s rich folk heritage with a tender love story.
It has exhibited close to 500 screenings in different regions of 14 countries and it was Screened at AMC Theatre in America’s Washington DC on December 2nd at 11 am during the DC South Asian Film Festival – 2023. Post its release, the Movie has reached the significant milestone of 100 days, and the Centenary celebrations were hosted at Bharat Cinema, Bejai Bharath Mall at 4:00 pm on 23 December. Osmitay has now set a record as the FIRST Konkani movie to complete a century in Karnataka’s Konkani film industry. Albert W.DSouza, the chairman of Aldell Education Trust, a Mumbai-based businessman and education stalwart, graced the occasion as the chief guest and he complimented the cast and crew members of the cinema.
Briefing the audience about the birth and success of Osmitay, Eric Ozario said, ” People think that Konkani movies don’t succeed, however, Osmitay has proved them wrong. In 100 days of its release, Osmitay has been screened close to 500 in various theatres worldwide. And that’s a BIG accomplishment for a Konkani film for the FIRST time. Even though I had written the story, Osmitay’s success should go to Joel Pereira who gave the finishing touches and the movie to reach its goal. Our identity is our culture. If we lose our identity, we lose everything. I wanted to help create a film that made Konkanis proud of their identity, language, and culture. I attempted to show our rich traditions through the variety of music and folk dances which you find in Goa, Mangalore, and other parts of the Konkan coast. And luckily I have made my dreams come true”.
“I’ve been working to help preserve and promote Konkani culture for the past 35 years. I thought the best way to tell the World what I have to say is through a movie. I wrote the story about fifteen years ago to make it into a film. Even though it took me a long while to realize my dream, there were reasons, one among them finance. Meanwhile, I developed health issues. Last year, we decided to go ahead and make the film with whatever funds we could raise. Louis Pinto and I have worked on cultural issues for about 35 years. He took on the role of producer and distributor. We made the film using funds raised from eight friends, and there we have our baby making a big accomplishment”, added Ozario.
Chief guest Albert W D’Souza said, “Osmitay has shown the world that Konkani is still alive and popular among the masses. This is a movie worth watching with the family including kids and adults. It is packed with story, humour, good music, entertainment and above all free from violence. Kudos to Eric Ozario, Louis Pinto and the team for creating a milestone in taking the movie to greater heights and reaching the big accomplishment of a successful 100 days since its release. We need to support such Konkani films, thereby keeping our Konkani culture, traditions, and above all, our identity to the highest level”.
Also speaking on the occasion, the producer of the movie, Louis J Pinto said, “To accomplish any job or task, gather like-minded people. In 1973, I watched a Konkani movie in Bombay for the first time, and because of ‘Osmitay’, the Konkani community is receiving representation. This movie has been showcased in many states and nations, and the Konkani-speaking community is very small. Hence, we need to unite. Criticism is a part of life, and whatever criticism is given should be taken positively.”
Before the formal programme, the audience was entertained with dances and songs meticulously performed by the Mandd Sobhann group, under the leadership of Ms Irene Rebello, the joint secretary. The programme was eloquently and professionally compered by Arun Raj Rodrigues.