Deepika Padukone is Amrita Pritam, Abhishek Bachchan plays Sahir Ludhianvi in Bhansali’s next | bollywood | Hindustan Times
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Deepika Padukone is Amrita Pritam, Abhishek Bachchan plays Sahir Ludhianvi in Bhansali’s next

Even as he gears up for Padmavati release, Sanjay Leela Bhansali has finalised the cast for his film on Amrita Pritam-Sahir Ludhianvi. While Deepika Padukone will play Amrita, Sahir’s role will be essayed by Abhishek Bachchan.

bollywood Updated: Nov 03, 2017 21:19 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi, Chandigarh
Deepika Padukone and Abhishek Bachchan are all set to bring onscreen the love story of Amrita Pritam and Sahir Ludhianvi.
Deepika Padukone and Abhishek Bachchan are all set to bring onscreen the love story of Amrita Pritam and Sahir Ludhianvi.

Deepika Padukone, who is gearing up for release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati, has been reportedly roped in to play poet Amrita Pritam in the director’s next venture and Abhishek Bachchan will star opposite her as Sahir Ludhianvi.

Touted to be the love story of Pritam and lyricist-poet Ludhianvi, the film will be Deepika’s fourth venture with Bhansali. Abhishek is likely to essay Sahir’s role in the movie.

A Quint report quoted a source as saying, “Abhishek has begun preparing for his Sahir biopic . He will begin rigorous interaction with Sanjay Bhansali after Padmavati releases. But his groundwork on Sahir has begun in right earnest. He is regularly listening to the immortal repertoire of Sahir’s lyrics from Guru Dutt’s Pyasa to Yash Chopra’s Trishul. Abhishek’s father, Amitabh Bachchan, had the good fortune to interact with Sahir when he worked in Kabhi Kabhie and Trishul. So Bachchan Saab is able to provide plenty of invaluable inputs to Abhishek’s preparation.”

Earlier, Bhansali was in talks with Shah Rukh Khan for Sahir’s role. “It was in Red Chilles (before), then Bhansali took it over. Jasneet is the writer. I really liked the story but we have not confirmed it. Sanjay is supposed to meet me now. I think I’ll meet him after Raees, if he is free from Padmavati. He has a couple of stories and one of them is Sahir Ludhianvi. I heard it two years ago when it wasn’t with Sanjay,” SRK had said before the release of Raees.

No permission from family yet

Meanwhile, the family of Amrita Pritam claimed that the producers of the upcoming movie have not secured any permission from them regarding the project as yet.

Amrita’s 32-year-old grandson Aman Kwatra, a Delhi-based researcher in international relations, said, “So far, they have not got our permission in this regard.”

Amrita Pritam in April 1982 (HT File Photo)

Over two years ago, the family had threatened to move court and even sent a legal notice to another producer who had planned a similar movie, saying it had refused to approve the project even at the inception stage.

Film’s producer Ashi Dua and director Jasmeet Reen had then approached Irrfan Khan and Priyanka Chopra for the roles. The movie has not seen the light of the day.

Sahir Ludhianvi and Amrita Pritam romance

Sahir Ludhianvi was a popular Urdu/Hindi lyricist (HT File Photo)

Amrita Pritam and Sahir Ludhianvi saw each other over a crowded room and fell in love. Their romance may have started as a cliché but nothing about it was conventional. Amrita was still married to Pritam Singh in 1944 when she met Sahir for the first time but the marriage was not happy.

Their romance would take place over long distances as they wrote letters to each other full of endearments. From the letters to her memoirs, Rasidi Ticket, Amrita made her love for Sahir very clear but he was not so forthcoming. While he accepted to his mother that Amrita “aapki bahu ban sakti thi”, according to his biographer, he never committed to Amrita.

In 1960, he would fall in love with singer Sudha Malhotra, ending their relationship. Amrita, who had walked out of her unhappy marriage much before, would go on to have a relationship with painter Imroz. Seeing the two together, Sahir penned the song, “Mehfil Se Uth Jaane Walo” for the film Dooj ka Chand (1964).

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