After tasting box-office success with Junglee Pictures’ ‘Badhaai Ho’ (2018), director Amit Sharma’s next movie is on India’s football coach Syed Abdul Rahim featuring Ajay Devgn
The current untitled film featuring Devgn as Rahim, the Indian football team’s coach and manager from 1950-1963 is expected to roll mid-2019, reports the Mumbai Mirror.
“Making a biopic and a sports film was always on my wish-list and with this film, both genres have come together beautifully. I was busy with the post-production of Badhaai Ho when Boneyji (Kapoor, producer) called to discuss the subject. When he offered me the film, I leapt at the opportunity. Ajay is also really excited about playing Rahim saab,” Sharma says, adding that the film will showcase the “golden era of football spanning from 1952 to 1962.”
Under Rahim’s guidance, India bested some of the top teams in the world and returned from the 1962 Asian Games in Jakarta with a gold after beating South Korea. “We have started meeting players from that team. Three days ago, I met Tuslidas Balaram, known as India’s Pele, and Fortunato Franco to get an insight into their time with Rahim Saab. Both are in their 80s and had so much to share. We have got a lot of research material in place too. These people have done India proud, yet many of us don’t know much about them. So, it becomes a bigger responsibility to tell their story in the best way possible,” asserts Sharma, who also touched base with Rahim’s son and former Olympic football and FIFA official, Syed Shahid Hakim.
The sports biopic marks his reunion with Boney Kapoor, who had produced his 2015 action-drama ‘Tevar.’ The filmmaker is producing the film with Akash Chawla and Joy Sengupta. “Boney ji treats me like his son and our equation has grown stronger with time. He has given me such a big film which means he loves me a lot,” smiles Sharma.
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