Another iconic cinema theatre - Kapali - that Gandhinagar once boasted of will meet its end on October 12. Kapali was the country's first and the only Cinerama theatre. The theatre that opened its screen with Dr Raj Kumar's 'Mannina Maga' in 1968 is ending its show with 'Huliraya'. From October 13, there will be no shows in the theatre as the owners of the theatre have sold the building.
The theatre was inaugurated by then Union Finance minister Morarji Desai on February 16, 1968. Built on 44,184 sq ft, the theatre was owned by Gopal films and H Dasappa and Sons Private Limited. With 1,500 seats (although it was reduced to 1,112) it was once hailed as the biggest cinema theatre in Asia.
The building was put on public auction as the Kapali's owners who owed the Syndicate Bank Rs 26.5 crore with interest at 16.75 per cent per annum from November 2012. Along with the theatre, Kapali commercial complex was also auctioned to recover the loan dues. It is reported that the new owners will demolish the theatre and may construct a commercial complex with six-screen multiplex.
The iconic theatre has been an integral part of Gandhinagar - the hub of Sandalwood. The theatre has the credit of showcasing the most number of Dr Raj Kumar's movies, right from 'Mannina Maga'. Not many know that this was the first Kannada movie to complete 100 days here. It was a treat to see huge cut-outs of Sandalwood stars that would be erected outside the theatre ahead of their film release. In fact, it was pride for Sandalwood stars to have their films released in Kapali theatre.
According to reports, Shivarajkumar's 'Om' movie was released a record 30 times in this theatre. During the release of Upendra's 'H2o', police had to cane the audience to bring the situation under control, reports Deccan Herald.
Other iconic theatres in Bengaluru that are included in the annals of history were Majestic, Sagar, Tribhuvan and Kailash theatres.