While there are a string of biographical features — both released as well as in the pipeline — on sportsman, actors across film industries in India, a new domain of subjects are emerging — that of historical dramas, based on true events, with films like Padmaavat, Panipat, Kesari, Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy and Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi to name a few.
Joining the wagon is Neeraj Pandey’s upcoming film with Ajay Devgn. The film will be based on Chanakya, one of the greatest thinkers of ancient India. Devgn will be seen essaying the lead role; he tweeted about the same on Wednesday.
This is not the first time that Devgn will be seen essaying a real-life character on celluloid. His 2002 film The Legend of Bhagat Singh was a major hit at its time and won both the Best Feature Film and the Best Actor honours at the National Film Awards.
Chanakya is often regarded as one of ancient India’s (tentatively 4th Century BCE) greatest teachers, strategists and political administrators. He was also the royal advisor to the first Mauryan emperor Chandragupta Maurya. He has also authored the often-considered Bible of political administration titled Arthashastra.
The 1991 DD National TV drama Chanakya earned a cult status and is often considered one of the milestones of Indian television. Written, directed and featuring Dr Chandraprakash Dwivedi, the TV series went on to win a string of awards and accolades not just in India but overseas as well.
The upcoming film will also mark the first collaboration between director Neeraj Pandey and actor Ajay Devgn. It will be backed by Reliance Entertainment, along with Shital Bhatia of Friday Filmworks and Plan C Studios.