Music aficionados and Bollywood fanatics will soon witness the life and times of renowned ghazal and thumri singer Begum Akhtar on the big screen in 'Ae Mohabbat' and if things go as planned, actors Irrfan Khan and Kangana Ranaut could be seen together onscreen for the first time.
Irrfan Khan and Kangana Ranaut
Shri Anup Jalota Productions and Ae Mohabbat Productions on Tuesday announced the film on the life and times of Begum Akhtar, also the recipient of Padmabhushan and an icon of Indian classical music.
Directed by noted filmmaker Ketan Mehta, the film will have actor Irrfan Khan in the main lead with Oscar winner A.R Rahman giving the music of the film. Although the female lead if yet to be finalised but Kangana might end up doing the project.
"We are trying to get Kangana Ranaut to play one of the stages of Begum Akhatar in the film," Jalota told IANS when asked about the female lead for the film.
"We have grown up listening to and idolising Begum Akhtar. I have been wanting to intiate such project and a tie up with Ae Mohabbat Productions and associating with Rita Ganguly who knew her personally, is a real blessing," he added.
Ganguly, who used to be student of Begum Akhtar and calls her "Ammi" says that noted singer's life, the highs and lows, the times she lived in, her personality and professional life had a cinematic quality which can be made into full-length feature film.
"It is not really a biopic but a feature film. The screenplay is ready and it will have full formula of a superhit film . We are planning to release it next year as its a period film and lot goes behind making such projects," Ganguly told IANS.
As Begum Akhtar hailed from Faizabad and is buried in Lucknow, the film also got the support from Uttar Pradesh government, says Jalota.