The film revolved around Subash, an NRI who is challenged by his fiance who is completely modern in outlook to change India. Rest of the film shows how Subash tries to bring change in Indian country. The film generated humungous hype in media as it marked the comeback of Upendra as a director after 10 years of gap. The film received positive critical acclaim with critics praising the concept and screenplay.
With the title of the film depicted only by a symbol, it features Upendra and Nayantara in lead roles and is produced by Rockline Venkatesh, while V. Harikrishna scored the music. Making more than ₹100 million through satellite television and audio rights even before release, in Kannada it grossed a record ₹25 million in first three days of the opening weekend. The film grossed ₹500 million at the box office and was one of the Highest grossing Kannada films of 2010, along with Jackie. This film was dubbed in Hindi as Rowdy Leader 2 by Goldmines Telefilms.
Upendra returned to direction after nearly ten years. The nameless film was originally represented only by the hand symbol (seen in posters) and Upendra wanted the audience to name the film. The hand symbol could mean zero, or three or the Om symbol or Vitarka Mudrā (an ancient Buddhist gesture), public and media stuck to calling it Super.
Shooting began on 18 February 2010 at the Kanteerava Indoor Stadium with planned schedule for 90 days which included various locations in Bangalore, Dubai and London. It was produced by Rockline Venkatesh under the banner Rockline Productions, which is its 25th venture. The film saw the debut of Tamil-Malayalam actress Nayantara in Kannada films. Being a multilingual film, several artists from Telugu and Tamil film industries like Ali, Kadal Dandapani, Jeeva are also featured.
Prior to release, much information about the film was kept under wraps. During promotion of the film at an interview on a radio station, Upendra expressed his disappointment being labeled as a "different director" and explained that most of his directorial ventures deal with the things that he had undergone in his real life. When asked about the ten-year break, Upendra said he thought he would work on his acting career, but then it sucked him in like a vacuum which he could not get out of. After reaching a point where he was afraid he had lost his ability to direct films, he had to fight his fear and that is when he started working on the script of Super.Upendra as Subhash Chandra Gandhi (the name is a portmanteau of Subhash Chandra Bose and Mahatma Gandhi—the former is known for his revolutionary views to attaining Indian freedom, and the latter, for his non-violence)Nayantara as IndiraTulip Joshi as MandiraR. N. Sudarshan & Shylashri as Subhash's parentsSadhu Kokila & Ali as Chaddi Brothers (term chaddi means shorts and is a parody on the Bellary Reddy Brothers who are alleged to have involved in mining scam)Telugu actor Jeeva as a copTamil actor Kadhal Dhandapani as the Chief MinisterKannada film director Yograj Bhat is featured as off-screen narrator (uncredited)Rockline Venkatesh (producer) guest stars as the leader of a folk dance troop
A symbol being the title of the film, it is replete with symbolism from the title sequence is displayed. For instance, the credit for direction just shows "U" with an index finger pointing towards the audience. This story of India is narrated metaphorically through the story of Indira, the female lead.
Super depicts a Utopian India in the year 2030 where Indians are pictured to be wealthy, hard-working, and are seen wearing traditional clothing consisting of Ilkal saree and panche. In contrast, westerners are the ones taking care of menial jobs like taxi driving, janitorial, etc. It is a future where the rupee is valued 70 times the British pound and people who cannot speak Kannada are considered illiterates (and Westerners are visibly apologetic about the same). From this setting, the film regresses back to the current year 2010 where India is beset with problems of corruption, red-tapism, pollution and unemployment. Political satire is played out by using sounds of horses and donkeys when ministers appear on screen, which represents the political horse trading witnessed in recent times in the state of Karnataka. Scenes of raping Indira and the auctioning process of an entire Indian state are interspersed to draw a parallel between the two. The film finds a climax back in 2030 where a foreigner asks an Indian as to who was responsible for all the good changes in India, and the film ends abruptly again with the index finger pointing at the audience, symbolizing that it's the people who are ultimately responsible for the course of a nation.
Super was made in two languages (Kannada & Telugu), but the Kannada version was released first. Producer Rockline Venkatesh announced that there is no difference and story remains same in both the versions. In Karnataka, the Kannada version was released at over 180 theaters on 3 December 2010. The Telugu version of the film was released on 11 March 2011 in more than 95 screens across Andhra Pradesh. Fearing copyright violation, the production team postponed the international release to mid-2011 as there were chances of film getting leaked on the Internet during overseas release. Tamil film personality Rajinikanth flew to Bangalore to attend a private screening of the film arranged by the producer Rockline Venkatesh. The film saw a special screening in Infosys at its Mysore campus. It was also screened at the fourth Bengaluru International Film Festival (BIFF) in December 2011 as part of the 'political satire' category.
Kannada version of Super was released in the USA by Upendra's close friend Shivamurthy. The film was screened in USA's Chicago and Edison, New Jersey. It was scheduled for two shows in the town of Matthews, North Carolina on 23 and 24 April at Cinemark Theatres. In the city of Garland, Texas, it was screened in August 2011. The film was released in Australia in late August 2011, by a Kannada film distributor in Australia, Arunroopesh. It was screened in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth.
super movie had big opening at box office it made collection of₹2.5 crore (US$390,000) in two days in its lifetime run including Telugu dubbed version it made ₹50 crore (US$7.8 million)
In Karnataka, the Kannada version was released at over 180 theaters on 3 December 2010. The film reported sold-out shows all over the state of Karnataka. Some fans who could not get hold of tickets any other way bought them on the black market. It celebrated 100 days of run at over 90 centres, 125 days of run at its main centre and 175 days of run at PVR in Bangalore. The film grossed more than ₹ 550 million during its theatrical run and was one of the Highest grossing Kannada films of 2010.
After receiving good response for the audio track, Super was released in Andhra Pradesh in its Telugu version on 11 March 2011. Screened at more than 95 theaters across Andhra Pradesh, Super had an opening across the state. Upendra was quite happy about receiving extraordinary reviews from Telugu and English daily newspapers and websites. It received a widespread appreciation from Telugu newspapers like Eenadu and Vaartha which described Super as 'Upendra's best creative attempt' and was reported to be doing well in Andhra Pradesh. Reviews in the websites were also quite positive about the film. According to Upendra, the film's good reviews boosted the collections and that the film as a whole has been appreciated and the fresh concept of the story has been widely discussed in media. The distributors were quite happy about the response received throughout Andhra Pradesh. According to the box office analysts of Andhra Pradesh, the film surprisingly caught the attention of the B, C centre audience in a big way and scored good success. The film did good business in all theatres of Andhra Pradesh in spite of Cricket Season.
Critically, the film was widely well received in its Kannada version with the Times of India rating it 4/5 stars and describing that the film "succeeds in keeping the audience entertained with witty dialogs, neat script and lively narration, along with Upendra's antics, and, at times, his strange make-up." Deccan Herald termed the film as "something extraordinary" and praised Upendra's grand return to direction "by confusing and exciting the audience right from the movie’s inception, with a hotchpotch of his trademark films and roles" while downplaying the characterization of heroines.
Sify called it a "revolutionary concept" in story-telling which "will make people ponder over the contemporary events and see how the country is plundered by the greedy politicians and corporate community." DNA India also rated it 4/5 stars with a consensus that "Upendra still has all it takes to churn movies that are 'his style,' but contemporary in nature and he puts forth a message through this film as well, as he ruthlessly mocks the current political scenario." Other reviewers have largely appreciated the multifaceted film for its technicality, complex script dished out in an out-of-the-box narratorial technique while keeping the commercial aspect intact. Performances of all artists, especially Upendra's, has been another highlighted feature of the film.
In 2011, Rajinikanth attended a private screening of Super arranged by the producer Rockline Venkatesh. "It all started a couple of months ago when I met Rajini sir and told him about the film I was going to produce with Uppi as director. When he heard the story of the film, he was very happy," said Rockline. "When he learnt that it was a hit, he was thrilled and asked me to hold a screening for him, too." After the screening, Rajinikanth commented: "I like watching Upendra's films and this was no exception. He is an excellent director and is one of a kind in the country. The kind of subject he has chosen is excellent. We need more films of this kind which are thought-provoking and also well-made. It's amazing that a film of this scale has been made in Kannada. If I get an opportunity and an impressive script, I'd like to do a Kannada film in the future."
The film saw a special screening in Infosys at its Mysore campus where thousands of employees, which included non-Kannadigas, watched the film. It was screened at the fourth Bangalore International Film Festival (BIFF) in December 2011.
The Super soundtrack album rights was acquired by Madhu Bangarappa of Akash Audio for a record price of ₹12.5 million. Composed by V Harikrishna, the album has five songs and Upendra has penned lyrics for three and remaining two have been written by Yograj Bhat and V Manohar. It was officially released on 19 November at Leela Palace by Puneet Rajkumar and Raghavendra Rajkumar.
Unlicensed copies of the album were available online within hours after the release, and a team was formed by the production unit to fight audio infringement. This resulted in some Kannada music websites being brought down permanently.Udaya Film Award for Best ScreenplaySuvarna Film Awards 2011 - Favorite Film AwardSuvarna Film Awards 2011 - Favorite Director Award