Lalit Modi Gives Nod for Biopic

By Robin Bansal

New Delhi, Nov 4 (IANS) Indian Premier League (IPL) chief Lalit Modi Tuesday gave his nod to Bollywood production house Percept Picture Company (PPC) for a "fictional biopic" on his life, said a top official of PPC.

"We had to wait for a bit but its through now. I had a meeting with him (Lalit Modi) in Mumbai at 11 in the morning and he is now very excited that he has committed for the film. It's a fictional biopic like 'Guru' on Dhirubhai Ambani," joint managing director of PPC Shailendra Singh told IANS over phone from Mumbai.

"The film is a great mix of entertainment, sports and a whole emotional vibe. Lalit's story has all the ingredients - rags to riches, fame, money and all that Indian audiences are going to enjoy watching. Indians at large would love to watch a good cricket marketing film," he added.

Titled "The Commissioner", the script of the biopic is being written by Shridhar Raghavan and is "under development".

"We've got all the information and the research has been done. He (Raghavan) will take a couple of more months to be ready with the story and we should do the principal filming in 2010 and should be in a position to release the picture by end of the year," said Singh.

Asked about the director and the cast, he said: "We can't announce the director yet because we are still to finalise the choice, as it's first the script, then the director and then the casting for us. However, other than the lead, casting won't be much of an issue."

"But the apt choice would be Shah Rukh Khan. He is India's number one superstar and the minute we have the product in its true form of presentation, we would approach him for sure," he said.

Other actors in consideration for Modi's role are "Irrfan Khan and Shahid Kapoor".

Singh is also keeping a no holds barred budget for the film.

"There will be no compromise in this film. Mr. Modi won't allow me to compromise. It is a typical A-list Bollywood film but we can only get the true perspective of the costing once we have the script in hand," he said.

"However, Lalit Modi practically lives in an aircraft, so that's one of our headaches. In the IPL, he flew every evening and attended two press conferences in different cities. It involves a lot of filming," he added.

Is Modi also going to invest or appear in his life's story?

"He will have an option to invest financially if he chooses to... But the only appearance he is making is by allowing us to make the movie on him and subsequently by being present at the press conference to announce the same," said Singh.

Singh also hinted at a presence of major cricket players in the movie.

"They are a part of the script because it happens to be based on IPL that has around 200 cricketers in it. They do happen to be a part of the cast unless any cricketer has a strict objection to being in the film," he said.



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