SS Rajamouli launches website for KiLiKi language used in Baahubali: The Beginning

SS Rajamouli launches website for KiLiKi language used in Baahubali: The Beginning
Image: Twitter/ssrajamouli

The Baahubali franchise, which released a few years ago, went on to become one of the biggest blockbusters in the history of Indian cinema. This fictional saga had smashed national, and international, box office records thereby creating a niche amongst peer industries. The cinematic extravaganza made headway into other streams as well such as a novel written based on Rajamata Sivagami, a live symphony at The Royal Albert Hall in London, and an animated series. On Friday, Baahubali has garnered another milestone. Marking the occasion of International Mother Language Day, a website has been launched dedicated to the KiLiKi language introduced in the first part – Baahubali: The Beginning.

The KiLiKi language, originally created by Dr. Madhan Karky, turned popular for its peculiar usage by Kaalakeyas in the first part of Baahubali.

Launching the website, director SS Rajamouli took to Twitter to congratulate Dr. Karky on the feat.

This site introduces the KiLiKi alphabet, numerals, and grammar. KiLiKi is designed to be a minimalistic language, using a minimum number of symbols, to cover maximum sounds. The KiLiKi alphabet comprises of 22 symbols. The videos, learning material, and games provided in this site help explore the KiLiKi language.

As stated by Dr. Karky, “The language does not belong to anyone. It does not have religion, caste, race or country associated with it. In other words, it belongs to everyone.” He also said that even the name of the language was created keeping the fictional tribe, Kaalakeya, in mind. The movie director had apparently decided not to even use subtitles. He wanted the language to look authentic through the expressions of the actors dialoguing it. Therefore, the only guidance the audience managed to get was one of the characters becoming a translator for the Kaalakeya tribal chieftain.

At the time of the release of the movie, KiLiKi had no written script. All the dialogues were written phonetically in English. Post the release, and success, of the movie, Dr. Karky wanted to venture into developing the entire language – with alphabets, meanings, and a new font. This is where Dr. Karky’s non-profit educational research organisation, Karky Research Foundation (KaReFo), partnered with LIFO Technologies to bring to life a brand new language – KiLiKi. 

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