Aamir Khan and Shah Rukh Khan have publicly expressed their ‘life long dream’ of adapting arguably the greatest and most layered story ever told, the Mahabharatha.
Shah Rukh has spoken about making ‘Mahabharat’ on multiple occasions, the most recent public quote was just a couple of weeks ago when the superstar said “It’s my dream to make the Mahabharat for the screen. It’s been for years now. But I don’t think I have the budget to do that. I would love to do it, but I don’t think I could afford to”
In the pre-Baahubali 2 era, Shah Rukh had probably underestimated the potential of the Indian market.
“Unless I collaborate… But not with Indian producers. There have to be international producers on board for this one because Indian producers and Indian films have a limited market. This one has to go out into the international markets. So you have to collaborate with someone who’s international”
The ‘Raees’ star had also said the scale has to be no less than a ‘Baahubali’ or bigger.
“You don’t take up a subject like the Mahabharat and make it any less. It should be on the scale of a Baahubali or an even larger one” Shah Rukh had said.
Aamir Khan too has said he wants to make the epic into a film and his dream would be to play the role of Karna. The actor had recently said he wants to divide the film and story into several parts.
Meanwhile, there have also been reports that a UAE businessman has signed Malayalam superstar Mohanlal for a 1000-crore bi-lingual film based on the story of Mahabharat. The makers are said to be keen on casting Hrithik Roshan as Lord Krishna. An excited Mohanlal also made the announcement through blogposts that he would be playing the role of ‘Bhima’ – the second Pandava son.
The scope of the story of the Mahabharat is immense, but it also requires a director of the calibre of a S.S. Rajamouli or maybe even a Sanjay Leela Bhansali to translate what’s on paper into a magnum opus. A less gusty director like a Ashutosh Gowariker, could so easily end up ruining the entire project.
Will the humongous success of ‘Bahubali 2: The Conclusion’ give the likes of Aamir Khan and Shah Rukh Khan the confidence to make a film that will not only bring the All-India audience to theatres, but even help Indian Cinema go truly global for the very first time?
With age no longer on their side, the time to realise their dream and make the Mahabharat into a big screen experience is now. Baahubali 2 has set an example, it’s time for the Indian Film Industry to up the ante and give the audience what they are looking for – bigger and better films!