It’s mythology with a modern twist. Mani Ratnam’s next film will be an interpretation of the Ramayan featuring Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan as the modern-day Ram and Sita, respectively.
The filmmaker last directed the pair in his hit film Guru. The venture is likely to go on the floors by the end of the year and will also be made in Tamil. Ratnam’s version of Ramayan will have Govinda essaying the role of Hanuman.
Govinda’s manager Shashi confirmed the news: “Yes, Govinda accepted the role at the very first go. He did not even think twice as Mani Ratnam is such an eminent director and he is making a film on Ramayan. So he gave a double thumbs up.”
Govinda, Shashi felt, was the best choice to play the modern day avatar of Hanuman. As for Ravan, the other central character, there were two names doing the rounds initially — Aditya Panscholi and Vikram (a superstar from the South), but the latter finally made the cut.
Incidentally, Vikram will also be playing the part of the modern-day Ram in the Tamil version. Ratnam’s reportedly been wanting to make a mythological film for some time now. A couple of years ago he was thinking of making Mahabharat but Ravi Chopra announced his version of before Ratnam could.
In fact, around the same time Raj Kumar Santoshi had also announced his plans for making Ramayan with Ajay and Kajol Devgan in the lead. Post Guru, Ratnam has been toying with several projects. One of them, with Aamir Khan and Kareena Kapoor, fell through. Another project, centred around a flower market, withered as well. So for now it’s revisiting the Ramayan for Ratnam.