While biopics are being made in quite a few numbers, the soon-to-be released Nanak Shah Fakir is one that stands out by quite a margin. This is the first time the story of the founder of Sikhism, Guru Nanak, is being attempted to be told on the big screen, however, without a protagonist.
In town on Tuesday, HT City interacted with actor Adil Hussain who spoke about his role in the film and shared a couple of other details as well. “I play the character of Rai Bular, who had great affection for the young Guru Nanak and held him in high esteem. Bular dreams about the birth of Guru Nanak and realises that he (Guru Nanak) is a special person and takes the responsibility to look after his financial needs,” said Hussain whose role is divided in three parts in the film: as a 35-yearold disciple when Guru Nanak was born, a 65-yearold when he goes overseas, and then an 85-year-old when he returns and meets him. After Guru Nanak’s sister, Nanki, Rai Bular was his second disciple.
Depicting the essence of Punjab, Nanak Shah Fakir has been shot at various locations across the country as well as abroad where Guru Nanak had visited. The film completed nearly two years ago, however, got delayed due to reasons unknown. When asked why he chose to e a part of a ‘faith’ film, Hussain shared, “It was a great challenge to portray three ages in the same film. Besides, I’m a great follower of Guru Nanak and his Bhakti movement teachings.”
He added that he was given a lot of study material and plenty of time to understand Nanak and his personality. “We have shot some scenes on the outskirts of Chandigarh as well,” revealed the 51-year-old actor.
Considering religious films tend to get dragged into controversies either due to concept or the manner in which certain scenes are depicted, we asked Hussain if any specific precautions had been taken while making the film. “Yes, indeed. The film tries to showcase the bond between people and the divine. Though one cannot please all, utter precautions have been taken. For instance, like in Islam, one is not allowed to show the face of God. So, in this film too, Guru Nanak has been depicted in the form of computer graphics, amid a beam of light,” he said.
Produced by Harinder Sikka, Nanak Shah Fakir also features Arif Zakaria, Puneet Sikka, Shraddha Kaul, Anurag Arora, Narendra Jha and Govind Pandey. Oscar winner Resul Pookutty has designed the sound and AR Rahman is the score mentor. The film was also screened at the Cannes Film Festival 2014 and garnered huge appreciation.