Irrfan Khan has completed a hat trick of sorts. After Ang Lee’s Life of Pi and The Amazing Spider-Man, he will work in an Indo-European venture titled Qissa, co produced as a German-Dutch-French-NFDC joint initiative. Irrfan says, “I am very excited about this venture. Set in the interiors of 1940s Punjab, Qissa will revolve around a logger who is seeking to rebuild his life after the Partition of India. A fine emotional narrative, it also explores his relationship with his son.”
The crossover actor will begin shooting for the film by the end of January. He says, “I have one more portion of Spider-Man to finish before I can start shooting this film. I’ve finished shooting for Life of Pi.”
The film will be made in Punjabi with subtitles for an international audience, and will be distributed worldwide. Why a Punjabi film after two fantastic English films? “The film has a global backing and an impressive storyline that one can connect with, the world over. The project is something like Shadows of Time (2004) and is being made at a good budget,” he says.
Irrfan informs he has known the director, Anup Singh, for a while: “I was impressed by a documentary he made a long time back and wanted to work with him since then.”
Nina Lath Gupta, Managing Director of NFDC, a co producer of the film says, “Germany’s Heimat Films met up with us at Rotterdam Cinemart. They are the principal producers of the film, and then, Dutch production house Augustus Films, France’s Cine-Sud and India’s NFDC joined hands. We have planned at a medium budget level.”
Ask her why the interest from such a diverse set in a Punjabi language film? “I always joke that for foreigners, any Indian language is the same as Greek and Latin for us. We are not looking at only promoting Hindi films overseas. Our mandate is to promote films in all languages, which serious cinema lovers will appreciate worldwide,” she says. The film, she informs, will see a worldwide release in 2013.