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Kaushik’s next is a real life story of a UP man

Actor-producer-director Satish Kaushik, who has been sitting on a particular story for last 16 years, is finally set to shoot the same from October 10 in Kandoni village in Sitapur’s Biswa area.

lucknow Updated: Oct 09, 2018 13:51 IST
Deep Saxena
Deep Saxena
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
Satish Kaushik,Real life story,Shooting
Satish Kaushik in Lucknow.

Actor-producer-director Satish Kaushik, who has been sitting on a particular story for last 16 years, is finally set to shoot the same from October 10 in Kandoni village in Sitapur’s Biswa area.

“I had grabbed the right to make the film on Lal Bihari ‘Mritak’ way back in 2003 but could not make it back then. It’s time has now come,” says Kaushik while briefing about the protagonist.

“While Mritak is a well know person in Azamgarh’s Amilo village very few people know about his story. I read about him in a newspaper. The title, I Am Alive, and the story left me speechless,” says Kaushik who has tentatively named the film, ‘Main Zinda Hoon’.

Who is Lal Bihari ‘Mritak’?

“This is true story of a man who was proven dead on paper over some property issue. He fought for 18 years to prove that he is alive. Later, he went on to form Mritak Sangh (Association of Dead) which has 20,000 members having relatable stories. I met him and we became friends. I helped his son to become assistant director. Today, they are a prosperous family with his son running a gas agency,” says Kaushik.

While the film got delayed, Kaushik feels it is the right time to make the film.

“That was not an era when movies on real stories were made. I tried making it a few times but it did not happen. Now, with the realistic cinema coming of age and biopics (Pan Singh Tomar, Milkha Singh, Mary Kom) and true stories of common persons getting acceptance, I think it is the right time to tell this story,” he said.

Lal Bihari bagged the ‘Ig Nobel Peace Award’ in 2003 which he was to receive in Boston. “His passport was ready but his visa could not get though and he could not travel. I eventually got it collected by my acquaintance in the US.”

National Award winning actor Pankaj Tripathi plays Mritak in the film and it also has Monal Gajjar, Mita Vashisht and many local actors.

Kaushik last directed ‘Gangs Of Ghosts’ in 2014.

“I had not made a film in many years and this is the right time to deliver a movie and shock the audience with the content. It’s my story and Imtiaz Husain, Ankur Suman and Shashank have helped me in building the story (screenplay and dialogues).”

Lyricist duo Rashmi Virag of ‘Humari Adhoori Kahani’ fame has written the songs and the film will have Awadhi flavour in the music. This is the first script that was approved by the script committee since the new Film Policy came into force, says the actor who in the last few years has acted in only few films.

“Last year, I produced an English film, ‘A Billion Colour Story’, which got 11 International awards and travelled around the globe. With the same director I produced ‘A Distant Year Drop’ and also produced a Marathi film ‘Udhan’. On acting front, I did Udta Punjab, recently Soorma and Yamla Pagla Diwana Phir Se. Next you will see me in Namaste England, followed by Mental Hai Kya, Salman Khan’s Bharat so I am back in action!”

His fourth season of ‘Filmy Calendar Show’ has also started on Fever FM.

“I am working for over three decade now. One has to accept that there is something called transition period and that happens with everyone. When generation changes things get outdated but then if you have talent and patience, you bounce back,” he said.

While earlier he was seen more as comic actor he is now being offered to play different shades.

“I have always tried to play significant characters and have never done cheap comedy. Calendar (Mr India), Pappu Pager (Deewana Mastana), German, Sharaf Ali, Jambo, Kunj and Muttuswami all were not just comic role. I played villain in Calcutta Mail and a dreaded rapist in Laxmi. Now, with Udta Punjab or Soorma both audience and industry is seeing me as a different shade of an actor,” he says.

Talking about his passion for movies, he says, “Coming from Karolbagh, I have been a movie buff all my life. Notwithstanding its fate, I made ‘Roop Ke Rani Choro Ka Raja’ with full ‘diwangi’ and today too I am living with the same spirit. This movie also I will make it with my full heart.”

First Published: Oct 09, 2018 13:51 IST