“RRR” screenwriter K.V. Vijayendra Prasad will pen the script of “1770 – Ek Sangram,” a big-budget adaptation of Bankim Chandra Chatterjee’s 1882 Bengali-language novel “Anandamath” (aka “The Abbey of Bliss”).
Set in 1770, the story takes place against the backdrop of the Sannyasi Rebellion when a brotherhood of monks banded together to fight the ruling British East India Company. “Vande Mataram,” which was later adopted as India’s national song, was first published in “Anandamath.” Friday (Apr. 8) marks the 128th anniversary of the death of Chatterjee.
Prasad’s credits also include “Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi” (2019), about a queen who fought against the British East India Company, and blockbusters “Baahubali: The Beginning” (2015), “Baahubali 2: The Conclusion” (2017), “Mersal” (2017) and “Bajrangi Bhaijaan” (2015).
Former Zee Studio head Sujoyy Kuttiy and award-winning short filmmaker and author Ram Kamal Mukherjee will serve as creative producers on the project. The film will be produced by Shhailendra Kkumar from SS1 Entertainment and Suraj Sharma of PK Entertainments and will be made in the Hindi, Tamil and Telugu languages. An A-list director will be revealed shortly.
Prasad said: “When Sujoyy Kuttiy approached me for ‘Anandamath,’ I was a bit taken aback. I had read the novel many years ago, and frankly speaking I didn’t feel that today’s generation would be able to connect with the subject. But when I met Ram Kamal and he shared his vision on ‘Anandamath,’ he had a completely different take on the novel. It was commercial and connected with human emotions. After a couple of sessions, now I am excited to work on the subject with a completely fresh perspective. It will be a huge challenge for me, to recreate the magic of ‘Anandamath.’ “
Kuttiy said: “I am glad that we are revisiting classics. As an executive producer, I am excited to recreate the magic of ‘Vande Mataram’ on screen.”
Mukherjee added: “I will be working with a celebrated Indian creative team, and make sure that its a visual treat for audiences. This is the right time to tell the story of ‘Anandamath’ – the story of Sanyasis who fought against the British Raj and sowed the seed of independence.”
The film will be shot in India’s Hyderabad and West Bengal and in London, U.K.
Sharma said: “Unfortunately, people have forgotten the gems that we have in our literature. I was certain that I would like to debut as a producer with a film that would connect with the soul of India.”
Kkumar added: “With Vijayendra sir’s magical touch, this film will be appreciated both critically and commercially.”