Shoojit Sircar's film on the life and songs of Kishore Kumar written by Rensil d'Silva might be on hold for now, but that hasn't stopped Nagesh Kukunoor and Sudhir Mishra from planning their own movies on the legendary actor-singer.
Mishra says making a Kishore Kumar biopic would be a "dream come true".
"My favourite filmmaker and one of the primary influences on my life and career is Guru Dutt. However, a film on his life seems difficult if not impossible. Guru Dutt has already borrowed chapters of his own life in Pyasa and Kagaz Ke Phool. Making a Kishore Kumar biopic would be a dream come true. No one knows the real Kishore," the filmmaker said.
But Mishra, known for movies like Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi and Chameli, is not yet sure who to cast in the lead role.
On the other hand, Nagesh Kukunoor, who also plans a film on Kishore Kumar, is sure of his main actor. He wants to cast his favourite actor Shreyas Talpade as Kishore Kumar for two reasons. First, Kukunoor feels a Kishore Kumar biopic cannot be attempted with a star who has a strong image and second, Shreyas is a huge Kishore Kumar fan himself.
Kukunoor thrives on Kishore Kumar songs and claims to know the most obscure of them. "And if it's a duet I only know the male portion by heart," he chuckled.
The Iqbal director wants to focus on the music and songs of Kishore Kumar.
His narrative would be propelled forward on the strength of Kishore Kumar's songs and he is in the process of acquiring the rights to the original numbers.
The filmmaker has spent hours with Kishore Kumar's son Amit Kumar and wife Leena Chandavarkar, who gave Nagesh enough anecdotes to make his biopic comprehensive.
Interestingly, Kishore Kumar's immediate family has also had meetings with Shoojit Sircar, who plans his biopic after he completes his current assignments.
Kukunoor has already approached producers. He had reportedly gone to Subhash Ghai with the proposal. Though the producer-director was enthusiastic about the idea, he apparently felt such a mammoth project required an equally big name.
Mishra disagrees. "You can't have an acknowledged superstar playing a personality whom generations know like a member of the household. On the other hand, you can't make a big-budget biopic on Kishore Kumar unless you've a readymade audience. So it's a Catch-22 situation."
One possibility that Mishra is willing to explore is to cast Kishore Kumar's younger son Sumit...provided Sumit could act.
"But then whoever thought Kishore Kumar could act, sing, dance, entertain, compose...all at the same time? His son must have inherited some of that talent," he reasoned.