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Stephens ‘Uprising’ for Bollywood epic

Thesp to join Khan in Mehta-helmed pic about Pandey

A correction was made to this article on Aug. 11, 2003.

NEW DELHI — British actor Toby Stephens (“Die Another Day”) will step back in time to play an autocratic 19th century British officer based in India in a Bollywood epic planned for later this year.

Stephens, a Royal Shakespeare Co.-trained actor also known for his role as Kim Philby in the BBC’s “The Cambridge Spies,” will appear beside Bollywood star Aamir Khan in producer Bobby Bedi’s “The Uprising,” to be directed by Ketan Mehta.

Film follows the life of Mangal Pandey, India’s first known revolutionary freedom fighter, who was hanged by the British in 1857 for revolting against their rule.

Khan will play Pandey in the film while Stephens will play Pandey’s British friend and commanding officer William Gordon. The movie will co-star Bollywood actresses Aishwarya Rai and Rani Mukherjee.

Bedi also produced “Bandit Queen,” based on the life of female bandit-turned-Parliamentarian Phoolan Devi.

Bedi said shooting will commence by early October and be completed by March. “We plan to shoot in New Delhi, Bombay, Pune and a little bit in Kazakhstan, Central Asia.”