AR Rahman’s Romantic Drama ’99 Songs’ Hits Cannes Market (EXCLUSIVE)

Indian music director AR Rahman'Agadbam' film
Azhar Khan/SOPA Images/REX/Shutterstock

“99 Songs,” a new romantic drama written by India’s two-time Oscar winning AR Rahman (“Slumdog Millionaire”), is being introduced to international distributors in Cannes by Hong Kong-based sales agency Autumn Sun.

Now in post-production, the film depicts the journey of a struggling singer and the problems that he faces in his quest to be a successful composer. The tale of triumph in the face of adversity is not intended to be a biopic of Rahman, who is now a superstar.

Rahman hails from a family of modest means that wanted him to pursue an academic career. He later broke into the music scene with a rock band and through work in the advertising industry. Rahman now works in the Indian and Hollywood film industries and has amassed five Oscar nominations. He also won a Golden Globe for “127 Hours.”

“99 Songs,” presented in Tamil, Telugu and Hindi, stars newcomer Ehan Bhat, who trained extensively in music for the project. It also features Edilsy Vargas, R. Bhakti Klein, and Ashwath Bhatt.

Rahman co-wrote the script with Vishwesh Krishnamoorthy, who also directs. Rahman is producing through Ideal Entertainment and YM Movies with the backing of Reliance Jio. Rahman also composed the film score.

Autumn Sun was established last year by former Arclight executive Elliot Tong. It previously handled Asian sales on Vasan Bala’s martial arts film “The Man Who Feels No Pain.” The film won the People’s Choice Award at Toronto’s Midnight Madness strand and was produced by RSVP, the production company fronted by Disney’s former India chief, Ronnie Screwvala.