Ad filmmaker Shrikumar Menon, who is working on the film adaptation of MT Vasudevan Nair’s Randamoozham, will be making the movie on a budget of Rs 1000 Crores. Reports indicate that this would be the most expensive Indian film till date.
Titled Mahabharata, the film has Mohanlal in the lead role. The actor plays Bheema in the project which is set to be produced by BR Shetty, an UAE-based businessman.
The film was originally announced at a budget of Rs 600 Crores, which was then increased to Rs 850 Crores. Now, BR Shetty is of the opinion that a classic such as this deserves to be made on a larger scale. “As he sees it, no one should be able to attempt a film like this again. It is an immortal epic of India, and he said it should be a film that takes Mahabharatha to the world. It should be as popular as Greek Mythology after the film releases,” Shrikumar said.
According to a report in The Hindu, the director got Vasudevan Nair on board the project by promising to make it a ‘global’ film. “He [Vasudevan Nair] said it would require a canvas that was far larger than what regional Indian cinema could offer and that’s why he had never written a screenplay despite a lot of demand. I promised him I would bring in the best technicians by making it a “global” film. He then got to work and he gave me a fully bound script within four months,” Shrikumar added.
The 600-page book has been re-written into a screenplay with close to 190 scenes. To accommodate this, the movie is expected to release in two parts. The film will go on floors in September 2018 and is slated for an early 2020 release.
“It will have master copies in five languages (Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam and English), and an international version with an adapted screenplay to suit Hollywood standards,” the director said.