Shiamak Davar will play mentor to 10 slum kids in the movie he is directing for Percept Picture Company, A Slumdog Millionaire Goes Dancing.
The film that is expected to take off by early December is targeting a February-March 2010 release. Auditions in slums across the city should start soon.
Stars as mentors
He’s an understated icon with over 8,000 students in Mumbai alone, and has choreographed stage acts and film songs for almost every top-ranking Hindi film star, from Madhuri (Dixit), Sridevi, Karisma (Kapoor) and Shilpa (Shetty) to Hrithik (Roshan), Aishwarya (Bachchan), Rani Mukherji and Shahid (Kapoor).”
Singh admits that they will leverage their combined Bollywood contacts to bring some of these above-mentioned stars into the picture to play mentors to individual participants whose journey to stardom will be documented in the movie.
“It will just be two days work for these celebs but their presence will make out Slumdog film as big as Danny Boyle’s Oscar winner,” points out Singh, adding that he’s optimistic about these special appearances because Bollywood has always supported a cause and then there’s the Shiamak connect.
PPC has backed several experimental films in the past, including the National Award winning Kanjeevaram and the Indianised Children Of Heaven, Bumm Bumm Bole. But Singh reasons that in the present market, an off-beat venture is not likely to be viable without big names associated with it.
He is confident that if Davar reaches out to former protégés and current superstars like Shahid Kapoor or Shilpa Shetty who have danced to his tunes in the past, they will not say no.
“I’ve known Kapil Dev for 20 years and every time he has requested any cricketer, past or present, to come for a match, he’s not been disappointed,” says Singh, whose latest project will have the realism of a docu-drama and the masala of a commercial Hindi film.