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    Feb 2011


    Cool Emraan heads West, signed by No Man's Land director

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    Emraan Hashmi has taken the biggest leap amongst actors of his generation in Bollywood. He has been signed for a film by none other than Academy Award winning director Danis Tanovic of No Man's Land fame. It is the same film which was chosen for the Oscars over Aamir Khan's Lagaan a decade ago. Though one wonders whether the filmmaker was conscious of the fact that a film coming from India had almost resulted in a photo finish for the Oscars race, Danis himself hasn't shied away from roping in an Indian actor for his next.

    "This is huge. Period", says an insider, "Let's not even talk about competition here as Emraan has clearly made his entry into an elite segment here. For someone who was said to be delivering hits only due to his kissing prowess, the man has gone ahead and proved his credentials, especially over last couple of years. What more testimonial do you need as an actor than working with an Oscar winner director?"

    Moreover, unlike some of the Indian actors in the recent past who were (literally) seen in blink-and-you-would-miss roles in prestigious Hollywood products, Emraan is expected to throw around some substantial weight. Reason being that the film has another Indian connect as well, hence turning out to be an international collaboration.

    "There are several production houses coming together for this one", a source adds, "The film would be backed by ASAP Films (France), DAR Motion Pictures, Sikhya Entertainment and, hold your breath, AKFPL (Anurag Kashyap Films Pvt Ltd)."

    In a way this is indeed a big deal for Anurag Kashyap as well. He has spread his wings too and a film with him, Emraan and a director like Danis is one heady cocktail that industry can look forward to.

    "Exactly", says an observer who has closely followed Danis' work over the years, "Danis hasn't restricted himself to any particular genre, geography or language. His films like Hell, Triage and Circus Columbia, each of which came after No Man's Land, have been a different affair. These have been made in English, French and Bosnian. Let's see if this time around for Emraan's film he experiments in Hindi as well."

    While one waits to hear further details around language, location, timelines of the shoot as well as developments that led to Danis narrowing down on Emraan for the part, one thing is for sure that the man who started from Footpath is indeed headed for the skies.



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