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Terrorism comes to Bollywood

March 13, 2003 20:24 IST

Director Tigmanhsu Dhulia, whose film on student unrest in north India, Haasil, is ready for release, has plunged into his second film. Tentatively titled Charas, it deals with international drug trafficking.Jimmy Shergil

Its leading man Jimmy Shergil describes the film as "Steven Soderbergh's Traffic meets Alan Parker's Midnight Express."

International terrorism will also be seen on the Hindi screen. The first of the lot to be released Anil Sharma's The Hero: Love Story Of A Spy, where Sunny Deol plays a secret agent, a la James Bond, for the first time. The role gives Deol the chance to don several disguises -- something he hasn't done before. His earlier Sharma-directed opus, Gadar, was about cross-border terrorism of another kind.

Ram Gopal Varma's Ek is about individuals from various Indian and international intelligence agencies coming together to squash a nuclear threat to India. "It is a huge film," Varma admits, "and yes, it is about international terrorism. I guess cross-border terrorism has run its course in our movies. We need to move on."

Debutant director Rohit Shetty's action-thriller Zameen stars Ajay Devgan as a military officer and Abhishek Bachchan as a cop who join hands to combat midair terrorism. The hijacking incident at the centre of the film is inspired by the Kandahar incident when passengers on board an Indian aircraft were held hostage in Afghanistan. Bipasha Basu plays an airhostess on the hijacked aircraft.

An unreleased Telugu film featuring Nagarjuna and Raveena Tandon also treads the route of airborne terrorism.

One of the first filmmakers to tackle international terrorism was Milan Luthria. In Kachche Dhaage, he showed arms being smuggled into India from Pakistan. The film's box-office failure deterred other filmmakers from attempting the same direction.

Now, the floodgates seemed to have opened with several filmmakers planning to take terrorism beyond home ground.

Subhash K Jha