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Those looking forward to see Anna Hazare’s biopic titled Anna, which was in the making for more than three-and-half years should brace for a big disappointment as far as an important aspect of the activist’s life is concerned. Arvind Kejriwal, former protege of Hazare, who now heads a political party and occupies the post of Chief Minister of Delhi, will be missing from the picture.
The director of the movie, which covers 65 years of the life of the self-styled Gandhian, says that he kept away Kejriwal and his association with Anna to keep negativity away from the film.
“My film is an inspirational one and is based on positive thoughts and the messages of Anna ji. It has nothing to do with the relations and spat between Anna Hazare and Arvind Kejriwal,” said Shashank Udapurkar, director of the movie, in which he himself plays the role of Hazare. The film is set for a mid-October release.
Anna captures Hazare’s childhood, his days in the army, return to home, work on watershed development and transformation of Ralegan Siddhi from a drought-prone village to a greenland, and finally, his war against corruption.
“It took me a year-and-half to research on his life and almost two years to pen the script. When I approached Anna ji with the proposal of a movie on him, he suggested me to make one on Gandhiji or Swami Vivekananda. I somehow managed to persuade him,” said Udapurkar.
The film has been shot at various locations including Kashmir, Mizoram, Mumbai, Delhi and Ralegan Siddhi. Sets were created to showcase the transformation of Ralegan Siddhi from 1970 to 1990 including Yadavbaba Temple, which he resurrected from ruins and made it home since.
Udapurkar said, “The role required someone who could dedicate a time span of almost two years and undergo a transformation from 57 kgs to 72 kgs as the character grows old-transforming from an armyman to a septuagenarian activist largely staying indoors,” said Udapurkar, who has worked in a dozen-odd Marathi films.