for Indo-Asian News Service on June 20, 2009
Lord Krishna is portrayed in multiple images as the naughty child, divine lover and eternal philosopher. And television producers and filmmakers are cashing in on his aura to woo audiences.
While TV shows like Jai Shri Krishna and the latest animated show Little Krishna have been entertaining viewers, the big screen has also been abuzz with animated movies like Bal Krishna and Krishna: Aayo Natkhat Nandlal in recent times.
Prem Sagar of Sagar Arts, which has been popular for producing shows like Ramayan and Shri Krishna, says it is the "universality" and "completeness" of Krishna's character that makes for interesting storytelling.
"It is not like only Krishna is the most popular character being shown on TV. There are shows on other gods like Shani, Sai Baba and Maa Durga as well. But what makes Krishna stand out is the fact that he is complete in all aspects," Sagar said.
"He has so many different shades to his character - romance, bravery, diplomacy, he was cunning, but positively...He is an epitome of completeness," he added.
Krishna is equally loved by devotees for his mischievous escapades like stealing butter and curds as a child, and his romantic interludes.
Lord Krishna was introduced on TV in 1987 with B.R. Chopra's mega-show Mahabharata and seven years later came Ramanand Sagar's Shri Krishna that was completely dedicated to the Blue God.
People have since then endeared him as a character despite the flurry of saas-bahu sagas and reality shows that have seeped into the Indian television scenario.
Sagar says that people of "every age, sex, society and income group identify with Krishna" and that is what has made him stay an on-screen favorite over the years.
"When we have these stories, why not take them to a wider audience through animation," said Ashish, who is CEO of BIG Animation, a subsidiary of Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group (R-ADAG).
Sagar, who has been in the business of producing and conceptualizing shows for decades, feels the creation of such programmers helps bring kids and new generations closer to our culture.