By Subhash K Jha
MUMBAI: The war of the Charles Sobhraj epics has just begun.
Even as DAR Motion Pictures have acquired the rights to film Farrukh Dhondy’s book Bikini Murders allegedly based on the life and crimes of Charles Sobhraj, the news comes that another Sobhraj film is all set to go on the floors this July.
This one entitled Jailbreak would be produced by Pooja Bhatt and directed by Prawal Raman who directed the brilliant thriller 404.
And hear this. Jailbreak, Prawal clarifies, is not about Sobhraj.
“I am not interest in Sobhraj. A man who spent 40 years of his life in jail doesn’t interest me. It is his daredevil prison escape from Tihar jail in Delhi in 1986 that gripped me. My film is based on Sobhraj’s jail break.”
Pooja Bhatt’s blue-eyed boy Randeep Hooda will play Sobhraj. Hooda, known to go into intense preparation for his parts, has already begun researching for the film which would focus not on Sobhraj’s exploits but his daredvilish jailbreak from Tihar.
The senior cops Amodh Kanth and Madhukar Zhende, who arrested Sobhraj after the jailbreak, would be pivotal character in Prawal Raman’s Jailbreak.
“In fact my film is based on the accounts of Amod Kanth,” reveals Raman.
Attempts to film Sobhraj’s life have so far been stonewalled by legal hurdles placed by the global charlatan himself.
And that brings us to the other proposed Sobhraj bio-pic. To be produced by Dar Motion Pictures, it would be based on Farrukh Dhondy’s book Bikini Murders and would be directed by Anurag Kashyap.
When I contacted author-columnist Farrukh Dhondy in London, he confirmed, “The rights to the book were negotiated with a group called DAR with Anurag Kashyap.”
May the best bio-pic win.