'Omkara' should have been India's entry for Oscars: Vivek

Jul 26, 2007 IANS

New Delhi, July 26 (IANS) Vivek Oberoi, whose role as Kesu Firangi in "Omkara", Bollywood's version of William Shakespeare's "Othello", won him critical acclaim, said the film should have been India's entry for Oscars as it represented the sentiments of the country much better than any other movie that was produced last year.

"The film (Omkara) should have been our entry to the Oscars. It represents India better than the other movie," he said during the 9th Osian's-Cinefan film festival being held in New Delhi.

Vishal Bharadwaj's film narrates the story of a successful chieftain Omkara, who is turned against his wife by a trusted member of his cohort after Omkara does not make him his successor. The movie has a powerful script backed by charismatic performances by Ajay Devgan, Saif Ali Khan, Konkona Sen Sharma, Kareena Kapoor and Vivek.

Although the film got rave reviews from critics, it failed to strike gold at the box office and was elbowed out of the Oscars race by Rakeysh Mehra's "Rang De Basanti", which was selected as India's entry for the Academy Awards.

Mehra's hit movie about a group of self-absorbed youths who try to break away from a modern consumerist existence, however, was not short-listed by the Oscars jury for the Best Foreign Film category.

"'Omkara' is a film that bridges the divide between commercial cinema and serious cinema," Vivek said.

"It cannot be said that the film was a serious film because no serious cinema would have an item number and again 'Omkara' cannot be called a purely commercial film because it a docu-drama which is simply commercially packaged," he added.

The "Shootout at Lokhandwala" star, who has acted in around 20 films, said he loved the character of Langda Tyagi from "Omkara" played by Saif Ali Khan, who received rave reviews for his villainous act in the movie. "Nobody could have played that role better than Saif. He was phenomenal," Vivek added.

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