Director Nitin Chandra, who’s made the critically-acclaimed Bhojpuri film Deswa, is all set to make his Hindi film debut with Company Ustaad. A while ago, actors Manoj Bajpayee and Naseeruddin Shah were roped in to play pivotal roles, but now Bengali superstar Prosenjit Chatterjee will also be seen in the film, with Chandra calling his role, ‘a powerful cameo’. “Prosenjit’s character is called Chitrakar, but while he is a painter for the world, in reality he’s an arm supplier to the revolutionaries of India,” says the director.
The film is set in the 1920s and is a biopic on a guy who used to counterfeit the British currency. The director is approaching some studios to back the project. “They think it may not be a commercially-viable film, but it’s actually a fast-paced thriller of sort. Some studios have shown interest in it though,” he says.
The director’s sister, actress Neetu Chandra shall also be seen in the film. “The character is that of a Bihari dancer. Neetu is a Bihari and a dancer, she just seemed to suit the character perfectly. But I need one more girl for the film, and want to cast a Bengali actress for it.” Interestingly, Chandra says, “I want to approach Vidya Balan for a song in the film, but I’m just waiting for the right time to approach her,” confirms the film-maker. While Pankaj Kapur has given his verbal consent to be a part of the film, the director says that he has yet to sign on the dotted line.
Company Ustaad can be expected to go on floors after monsoons, since a majority of the shoot will take place outdoors, in Bihar, Bengal and Varanasi. A small portion of the film will also be shot in Germany. “Manojji is busy till October, so we may begin the film after that,” he shares. Nitin Chandra also wants to make an English version of the film with The Eastern Winds, or Winds Of The East as its title.
Jacqueline to make a special appearance in Bangistan
Refuting reports that Jacqueline Fernandez will be sharing screen space with Riteish Deshmukh and Genelia D’Souza in Excel Entertainment’s Bangistan, a source stated that hers is not a full-fledged role but she will be seen in a special appearance in the film. “Jacqueline, who plays an NRI will also have a song picturised on her, and will only be shooting for about six to seven days,” added the source.