Actor Randeep Hooda’s forthcoming bilingual film Rang Rasiya in Hindi and Colours of Passion in English, was screened at the 52nd London Film Festival, recently.
“The film was superbly received at the festival,” says a cheerful Randeep. “The audience was enthralled by the colours and emotions of the theme. It was screened alongside Danny Boyle’s Slumdog Millionaire. Both the films were much talked-about. It was interesting because Rang Rasiya was funded from India while Slumdog Millionaire was funded from abroad.”
Unfortunately Rang Rasiya couldn’t go to the competitive festivals. “That’s because it was made simultaneously in three versions… Hindi, English and Hinglish. And all three versions couldn’t be readied in time. We’ve screened the film at Cannes and Venice too, but not in the competitive sections,” informs the actor.
Directed by Ketan Mehta and produced by Anand Mahendroo along with Deepa Sahi, the movie is a sensuous love story of the great Indian painter Raja Ravi Varma and his muse.
Both strikingly beautiful and audacious, the film charts the life of the great Indian artist from his early days under the patronage of a King of Kerala in the mid 1800s, moving on to British Bombay, where he makes his fortune. Here the genius gives birth to Indian modern art, helps inspire the independence movement and the dawning of Indian cinema with his depictions which bring to life the Hindu gods and goddesses. Phew!
“The film offers not only a spectacular insight into a turning point in Indian history, but also questions the freedom of the artist in contemporary society,” quips Randeep’s publicist Dale Bhagwagar.
True! Cause Varma’s fascination for his model Sugandha (played by Nandana Sen) turns into a torrid, paint-smeared love affair, which is reflected in his art. The religious power brokers see his increasingly eroticised work as dangerous and Varma is dragged to the British courts to be tried for blasphemy.
Rang Rasiya will release in early 2009 so keep an eye out for it!