Aamir Khan and Excel Home video have released an amazing collector’s set version of the masterpiece Lagaan. It has been 6 years since the movie released and according to Khan, “Every Indian should have Lagaan DVD.”
The DVD set includes not only the Oscar nominated Lagaan, but also the Satyajit Bhatkal directed documentary Chale Chalo -The Making of Lagaan. Included also is a song that was not in the finished movie. It is a poetic song that inspires Khan’s character Bhuvan. Each box also contains a bronze coin commemorating the movie.
And in true Aamir Khan style, there is an extra gem. “We have added a piece of the reel of Lagaan, we have cut the Lagaan reel in 10,000 pieces and put each piece in a different box,” Khan said.
The release of the DVD into the market was so long in the making because of a contract that stated that the producers had to wait 5 years to do so after the initial release of the film.
There was a special screening of the documentary at the launch of the DVD and director Ashutosh Gowarikar, Gracy Singh, Javed Akhtar, Satyajit Bhatkal and other people who worked on the film, along with Aamir, watched with great emotion. “It brought tears to my eyes while watching Chale Chaloat several occasions,”Aamir said.
Director Ashustosh Gowarikar on his part said, “Making Lagaan was one thing. Watching the Making of Lagaan is a wonderful achievement. A big round of applause for Satyajit. Cheers to all the lovers of Lagaan.”
Javed Akhtar, a well-known scriptwriter and lyricist said of the film, “How time passes. Seven years have passed. In retrospect I have learnt how to write a script. For, here is a film that breaks all norms. When Ashutosh Gowarikar came to me first and narrated the script, I had tremendous sympathy and compassion for him. Here was a man planning to commit suicide. I sent an SOS to Aamir sahib stating the same. A film with a rural background, hero wearing a dhoti, rural folk music, heroine wrapped in a sari, cricket was a poison for box office….this film was exactly the opposite. But after Lagaan I have realized that there’s no formula, no law. Only law is instinct, passion and love for cinema. What is admirable is the passion, the junoon that went in making this film. Hats off to Aamir and his team for the junoon that is a rarity these days,” Akhtar said.
Bhatkal agreed with what Javed Akhtar said adding, “It’s all about Junoon. Filmmaking is about abandonment of pragmatism. I kept shooting in an unplanned manner. And then we realized we had the rushes to make this movie.”
Javed Akhtar also told an incredibly funny story about the song Chale Chalo . “Music directors tend to give dummy words for their compositions. Rahman sahib who doesn’t have an enviable grasp of Hindi Urdu had given the dummy words as Nasha Nasha. If I wouldn’t have given the words Chale Chalo, this making would have been called Nasha Nasha.”
When asked if he had any worries about the commercial fate of the DVD, “Sach aur sahas hai jiske mann mein…anth mein jeet usi ki rahe, ” Aamir answered striking a dramatic pose complete with Lagaan fist with his hand pointed towards the journalist, while the rest burst into thunderous applause.
The spirit of Lagaan lives on and we can’t wait to get our hands on a copy of this wonderful DVD set. With its gifts of not only the moving and inspiring film, but also our own little bit of Bollywood memorabilia.