Work at the time of coronavirus: Bollywood goes around the world to shoot amid pandemic
With Akshay Kumar set to kick off Bell Bottom in Scotland, filmmakers consider overseas locations for shoots; Aamir Khan to take Laal Singh Chaddha to Turkey, Shakun revives Sri Lanka plan for Deepika Padukone-starrer.
Even as the Unlock India plan continues, one phase at a time, filmmakers are contemplating taking their projects abroad due to the ease of shooting and flexible safety restrictions. The idea has got a boost with India undertaking the Air Bubble agreement with the UK, US, France, Germany and the UAE. Among the first Bollywood projects to roll will be Akshay Kumar's Bell Bottom. The spy thriller — that features Vaani Kapoor and Lara Dutta — is expected to go on floors this month with the 120-member team flying to Scotland in private jets.
Taking a cue from Kumar, Aamir Khan is gearing up to take Laal Singh Chaddha to foreign turf. The setting is a crucial element in the Advait Chandan-directed venture as the narrative traces India's important political and cultural milestones as witnessed by the protagonist. A source reveals, "Aamir is planning to recreate Punjab in Turkey and Georgia as the former has brought the crisis relatively under control. The team is in the process of locking locations via virtual recce and will head there when the travel restrictions ease. The pending Ladakh schedule will possibly be shot in Kargil before that."
The third season of Four More Shots Please was to go on floors in April, with a portion to be filmed in Italy. Director Tannishtha Chatterjee reveals she has been taking updates from friends in the UK and Italy to understand the situation. "Shooting abroad is safer, but one must consider the rules of quarantine. If my unit has to be quarantined for 14 days, the budget will get affected. Also, the bigger chunk of the show is set in India. So, we have not determined when we will shoot."
Director Shakun Batra is handpicking a team of 50 that will fly to Sri Lanka for the shoot of the yet-untitled relationship drama, featuring Deepika Padukone, Siddhant Chaturvedi and Ananya Panday. "On August 1, Sri Lanka opened the airports for tourists again. Shakun is hopeful that India will resume flights to the country by November," says a source.
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