The 100th ton is finally in the history books. And the question on everyone’s mind is: What is next for Sachin Tendulkar? Today, it’s taking Team India to the Asia Cup final and later giving Mumbai Indians a winning chance in IPL Season 5 that flags off in April 4. On April 27, Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s Ferrari Ki Sawaari, a film about a young boy whose obsession with a Ferrari takes him to the Lord’s cricket ground, opens. Sachin owns a Ferrari and his son Arjun and Vinod’s son Agni Dev study in the Dhirubhai Ambani International School and play cricket together.
“Agni is a young cricketer and I’d gone to the MIG cricket club to watch him play. He wasn’t happy to see me, cribbing that now everyone would know he was my son. It impressed me to see a 10-year- old trying to make it on his steam, that sparked off an idea which the co-writer and director Raju Mapuskar developed into a film,” reminisces Chopra.
The climax is set in Lord’s and instead of cutting corners and faking the historic venue, Chopra decided to take his film to the London cricket ground. “It wasn’t easy getting permission to shoot. Initially, I got a curt ‘no’, but I went back with a detailed storyboard and eventually was allowed access into the Mecca of cricket, including the iconic Long Room at Lord’s,” he exults.
The Long Room that the players pass on their way to the middle from the dressing room and back, is a long walk lined with paintings of famous English cricketers and administrators and dates back to the 18th century. Only four overseas players from Australia have their portraits up there — Sir Donald Bradman, Keith Miller, Victor Trumper and Shane Warne. “It was such a thrill to walk down the Long Room and on the grounds. I took Agni along for the shoot. He was impressed, but Sachin is still his greatest hero. Whatever I do, I can never be Sachin!”
Sachin in Ferrari Ki Sawaari?
Vidya Balan in a song from Ferrari Ki Sawari
The buzz is that the Master Blaster could make an appearance in the film. Last May, he had tweeted, “Vinod Chopra has a script called Ferrari Ki Sawari. Just heard it. Sounds awesome”, then posted a picture on Twitter, saying, “Hanging with Vinod Chopra and Atul Kasbekar... 3 more Idiots (sic)?” Two years ago, Sachin had shot a documentary on Mumbai’s Siddhivinayak temple, Vignaharta Shree Siddhivinayak, directed by Yashwant Ingavale. Prod Chopra on whether the rumour is true and he retorts, “No comments!” Cricket in Bollywood
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