Directed byAshok Kumar
Written byAshok Kumar
Randor Guy
Produced byK. Jagadeeshwara Reddy
N. Sridhar
CinematographyAshok Kumar
Edited byUma Shankar Babu
Music byAdithyan
Teja Films
Release date
17 September 1999

Kaama (transl. Lust) is a 1999 Indian drama film co-written and directed by Ashok Kumar. Simultaneously made in three languages, the film stars newcomers Vishal, Sunila and Urvashi, while Deepti Bhatnagar, Asha Mehra and Alphonsa make guest appearances. The film was titled as Kaama in Tamil, Kama in Telugu and Kaama Tantra (transl. Composition of Lust, see also tantra) in Hindi. The music for the film was composed by Adithyan and the film opened across India in September 1999.[1]



After making films with sexual content including Kamagni (1987) and Andru Peytha Mazhaiyil (1989), Ashok Kumar chose to make a further film on the same theme as he felt that one "cannot sell the film unless it has got some sensuality".[2] Titled Kaama, the film's director cast his son, Vishal, in the leading role with actresses Sunila and Urvashi also selected. Debutant Asha Mehra also signed to star in the film, while the script was co-written by writer Randor Guy.[3][4] Production began in August 1998 and the shoot of the film was completed in six months in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu simultaneously.[5] Production began with a week-long schedule in Chennai depicting the lead actress's house, then a song featuring the lead three actors and forty dancers was shot at Mahabalipuram.[6][7] Actress Deepti Bhatnagar also shot for an item number in the film, featuring in a song involving the use of props such as honey, milk, rosewater and mud of sandalwood. A further song with Shweta Menon at Hogenakkal Falls was planned but later not shot.[7]

Before the release of the film, the project garnered significant media attention due to its sexual content. The theatrical distribution rights was sold out across the country, with particular popularity in Tamil Nadu, where its business was compared to that of the Rajinikanth-starrer Padayappa (1999). The publicity prompted producer Jagadeswara Reddy to add the title Kaama before his name, and be subsequently referred to in the media as "Kaama" Jagadeswara Reddy. The producer also announced another project titled Kaamini featuring Shilpa Shetty in February 1999, but the film was never made.[8]


The film failed to gain clearance from the Central Board of Film Certification in March 1999 due to its erotic content. In an interview to Rediff.com, Ashok Kumar stated his anger at the Board's decision to label it "a perverted, pornographic film" and questioned their aesthetic, creative and cinematic sense. He added that it was unfair that the Board were trying to taint his image as a respected filmmaker with such accusations.[2] The film later had a low-profile, limited release in September 1999.[9]

Ashok Kumar later chose to relaunch his son, Vishal, through another film with a similar theme titled Khajuraho (2002) featuring him alongside actresses Mamta Kulkarni and Saadhika.[10][11]


  1. ^ "Kaama | Telugu Full Movie | Vishal | Vuravasi |Sunila |Telugu Cine Cafe". YouTube. 23 September 2017. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Rediff On The NeT, Movies: Ashok Kumar attacks the censors for terming his film pornographic". Rediff.com. 25 March 1999. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
  3. ^ "Rediff On The NeT, Movies: Madras calling". Rediff.com. 13 October 1998. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
  4. ^ "Rediff On The NeT, Movies: Gossip from the southern film industry". M.rediff.com. 31 December 1998. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
  5. ^ "Rediff On The NeT, Movies: Gossip from the south". M.rediff.com. 4 August 1998. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
  6. ^ "Entertainment News: Latest Bollywood & Hollywood News, Today's Entertainment News Headlines". Archived from the original on 25 February 2008.
  7. ^ a b "Entertainment News: Latest Bollywood & Hollywood News, Today's Entertainment News Headlines". Archived from the original on 7 March 2008.
  8. ^ "Rediff On The NeT, Movies: Gossip from the Southern film industry". Rediff.com. 12 February 1999. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
  9. ^ "1999-ல் வெளியான படப்பட்டியல் - தயாரிப்பாளர்கள்| Lakshman Sruthi - 100% Manual Orchestra |". Lakshman Sruthi. 14 September 2007. Retrieved 7 February 2018.[dead link]
  10. ^ "rediff.com, Movies: Gossip from the southern film industry". Rediff.com. 24 May 2000. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
  11. ^ "Special4". Archived from the original on 13 July 2012.