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Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Chandan Arora turns producer for Striker

After Madhur Bhandarkar who's co-producing Fashion, it's Chandan Arora who's turning producer to direct his carom flick Striker.

Says Chandan, "I think producing my own film gives me the freedom to make the kind of films I believe in. It gives me complete authority to make the film that way I do. So yes, after working with Ram Gopal Varma and UTV for my first two films Main Madhuri Dixit Banna Chahti Hoon and Main Meri Patni Aur Woh, I am my own producer for the third film."

Chandan will get independent finances. "Money will be pooled in from various sources. But for all practical purposes I'll be the producer of Striker." Why the need to get into the economics of filmmaking? "The only way I can make the film that I want to is if I've complete autonomy. Striker isn't just a film about the game of carrom. Nor is it only about life in the slums. It takes into view the entire sub-culture and slum life in Mumbai from the early 1980s to around 1992. To be honest to my vision I need a kind of free hand that is affordable only with financial freedom."

Striker stars the Tamil superstar Siddharth in his first Hindi-language outing since Rang De Basanti where he played the pivotal role of the closet socialist. In Striker Siddharth's character will actually step into the proletarian province. Says Chandan, "Siddharth is perfect for the protagonist's part. He speaks fluent Hindi, understands the slum character's ability to stay honest in spite of crime and muck around him, and is very good at the game of carrom. Others in the slum had half a dozen cases pending against them. The hero's record remains untarnished."

Will Siddharth do for the game of carrom what Shah Rukh did for hockey in Chak De India? Laughs Chandan, "Like I said Striker isn't just about carrom board. It's a microcosmic view of the entire slum, similar to Sudhir Mishra's Dharavi in scope."

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