Brits invest in Bollywood pic

'Sonia' scheduled for completion by April 2006

NEW DELHI — One of the first movies made under the British government’s Bollywood initiative, which allows British investment in Indian cinema, will focus on the life of a reluctant Italian.

Sonia Gandhi, chief of India’s ruling Congress Party, will be profiled as a leader who entered politics only to fulfill the dreams of her assassinated husband, Los Angeles-based director Jag Mundra told reporters in New Delhi.

“Sonia”, with a budget of about $6 million, is being produced by Britain-based company, CEE (i) TV UK, which is venturing into feature films for the first time, Mundra said.

The English-lingo feature will track Sonia’s journey in the 1960s from Italy’s Bassano village to Cambridge University in Britain where she falls in love with Rajiv Gandhi, the scion of India’s political first family, the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty.

The film is based on the book “Sonia — A Biography” by Indian journalist Rasheed Kidwai.

To be be filmed in Italy, Britain and India, pic is scheduled for completion by April 2006.

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