Devdas, in two different avatars

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Devdas, a classic work of literature by Bengali author Sarat Chandra Chatterjee, has already been made into films starring; K.L Saigal, Dilip Kumar and recently Shah Rukh Khan in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s version. Now there are two other versions being developed and both have a new modern treatment to the story.

Anurag Kashyap’s Devdas stars Abhay Deol and is titled Dev D. The script written by Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwani puts a modern twist on the classic story and they decided that it should not be a tragedy but a happy ending.

Deol says, “I had this idea about the relevance of Devdas in today’s era and I realized what applied to a devastated man in that period, doesn’t now. There will be rage not self-pity and he’ll probably recover from his drunken phase and then fall in love again. That is what happens.” In fact this story ends with Devdas falling for and staying with Chandramukhi. Opposite Deol’s Devdas, Mahi Gill will be playing Paro. Chandramukhi has yet to be cast.

The second film being developed will star Shiney Ahuja as the tragic hero. Directed by Sudhir Mishra who says, “I want to re-interpret the love story of Devdas and Paro into a modern political context.”

Adding that, “It’s not only Devdas. Devdas is just the takeoff point. Like if you see Westside Story it’s directly linked to Romeo & Juliet. In my film from Devdas I also go into Shakespeare’s Hamlet. I feel when Saratchandra wrote Devdas in 1901 he must have had Hamlet in mind. The protagonists are very similar. I’m putting both the tragic hero’s into a modern context and political leaning. It would be dramatic debate on Devdas, Hamlet and Indian politics. Chandramukhi will be portrayed as a keeper of dark political secrets while Paro will be a part of an opposing political party.”

Produced by Pritish Nandy, this version is being co-written by Joydeep Sarkar with the casting for the leads opposite Ahuja still to be decided.

We are sure both films will be interesting to see and look forward to their unique interpretations of one of Hindi literature’s classical love stories.

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