By Subhash K. Jha Bollywood Hungama News Network
Ranbir Kapoor in Prakash Jha's Rajneeti and Farhan Akhtar in Sudhir Mishra's Dhruv (to be produced by Farhan and Ritesh) have a lot in common.
Both the leading men play reluctant politicians; educated, westernized boys who when forced into politics take their responsibilities as political leaders seriously.
Both will be playing Chief Ministers of Indian states who learn the political game on the job.
While the politics of Prakash Jha's cinema is inspired by the Mahabharat, Mario Puzo's The Godfather and happenings in the Gandhi dynasty, Sudhir Mishra's film will seek straight inspiration from Shakespeare's Hamlet and episodes from the director's grandfather's life.
Both the actors would have to go through a period of orientation before they start shooting.
But both directors wanted that raw apolitical quality in their protagonists.
Mishra seems to be talking on behalf of Prakash Jha's behalf when he says, "Though set in contemporary times, my film won't be looking at the sensational sleazy side of news headlines. It will look at today's politics with realistic eyes."
Shakespeare will be getting proper credit for Sudhir Mishra's adaptation of Hamlet that the director is adapting to the current political scenario in the film that will star Farhan Akhtar in the lead. Says Sudhir, "That's the way it should be with all adaptations. Nothing comes out of thin air. But we must acknowledge our source of inspiration."
In fact, in the forthcoming film Sikandar, which Sudhir Mishra has produced, for two lines from Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Sudhir pursued Faiz's daughter for consent. "I'd have got Shakespeare's permission to use Hamlet in Farhan's film. But he isn't alive. I'd happily acknowledge my source of inspiration in the film."