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Mahesh Bhatt's 'Daddy' readies for the stage

After the theatrical adaptation of Arth, filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt decided to take a leaf from it, and is now looking to finalise the cast for a theatre adaptation of his 1989 film, Daddy

He ventured into unchartered territory when he adapted his 1982 film Arth into a play, but now encouraged by the response, filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt is ready to take the same path, again with the theatrical adaptation of Daddy, a critically and commercially acclaimed film that he directed in 1989.


Mahesh Bhatt with his daughter Pooja and actor Imran Zahid, who will essay the role, actor Anupam Kher played in the film

“After the success of Arth’s dramatic version, I felt that Daddy, too, was a kind of movie that could be brilliantly adapted for stage. It has same raw human emotions and naked truths about life and hence, can have a similar kind of impact,” reasons Bhatt, who will look after the production aspect of the play.


The poster of 1989 film, Daddy

A film that marked the debut of Pooja Bhatt (Bhatt’s daughter), Daddy was born in the times when Bhatt was struggling to combat alcoholism. “Like Arth, it has the emotional truth of my turbulent life. Daddy revolved around a young girl who helps her father, a faded singer, kick his drinking habit and regain his lost glory,” reveals the filmmaker, adding that it is this sensitivity of the plot that will make an impact.

Bhatt plans to premiere the play in June this year. Actor Imran Zahid (who also played the lead in the play, Arth) has been roped in to play the character of the protagonist essayed by Anupam Kher in the film. “For the role that Pooja played in the film, we have decided to cast a fresh face and we have already started auditioning for the same,” shares Bhatt.

As far as the director is concerned, Bhatt is looking for a name who is not into commercialisation, and “is definitely not the kinds I find in my backyard all the time,” he asserts.

Some changes

“We won’t digress from the original script, the plot will be the same but the situations and storytelling may be different. Daddy will be Imran’s (Zahid) interpretation, entirely; he needs to unshackle himself from my work and find his own fingerprint. I will leave it to the director and Imran to interpret it according to their fertile imagination. That is the role of a good gardener.”
— Mahesh Bhatt

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