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The film was conceived by Rajamouli’s father K. V. Vijayendra Prasad, who randomly told him a story about Sivagami, a woman who carries a baby in her hand while crossing a river, and a few years later about Kattappa, which intrigued Rajamouli. His fascination with mythology and the tales of the Amar Chitra Katha comics further fuelled his interest in the story. However, it took the writers three months to complete the final draft. The soundtrack and background score were composed by M. M. Keeravani while the cinematography, production design, and VFX were handled by K. K. Senthil Kumar, Sabu Cyril and V. Srinivas Mohan respectively.
The film was made on a budget of ₹180 crore (US$26 million), making it the most expensive Indian film at its time of release. The film opened worldwide on 10 July 2015, garnering critical acclaim and record breaking box office success. With a worldwide box office gross of ₹650 crore (US$94 million), it became the highest-grossing film in India, third highest-grossing Indian film worldwide, and highest-grossing South Indian film, at the time of its release. Its Hindi dubbed version also broke several records by becoming the highest grossing dubbed film in India. Both budget and box office records have since been surpassed by Baahubali 2: The Conclusion, the second highest grossing Indian film of all time.
It received several accolades. It won the National Film Award for Best Special Effects and Best Feature Film, becoming the first Telugu film to win the award. At the 63rd Filmfare Awards South, the Telugu version won five awards from ten nominations, including Best Film, Best Director for Rajamouli and Best Supporting Actress for Krishna. The Beginning became the first Indian film to be nominated for Saturn Awards, receiving five nominations at the 42nd ceremony, including Best Fantasy Film and Best Supporting Actress for Tamannaah.