'Rang De Basanti truly deserved to be a book'

Filmmaker Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, who has brought out a book about his personal journey while making Rang De Basanti eight years after its release, feels the national impact of the cult film compelled him to write about it.

The book, titled Rang De Basanti: The Shooting Script, is penned by the director, writer Kamlesh Pandey and screenplay writer Rensil D’Silva.

“RDB is not just a film, it has become a movement. It truly deserved to be a book in my opinion. It has stirred debates and its impact can be seen even today. The film belongs to the nation and I feel the youth should know how we started with it,” Mehra told PTI at the launch of the book here.

Rang De Basanti released in 2006, starred Aamir Khan, Sharman Joshi, Kunal Kapoor, Soha Ali Khan and R Madhavan in lead roles. The movie became a runaway hit and also won critical acclaim.

“The book features how I started with nothing and got so far. Many youngsters come to me and ask, ‘We want to make a film but have no buyers and don’t know from where to start.’ So, this publication has my journey from the time I started with an idea about RDB and how it went to become what it is today,” the director-producer said.

The Shooting Script features interesting trivia like initially Mehra and Pandey titled the film Young Guns of India. Also how Aamir Khan suggested to the filmmaker to add the scene in the script where the protagonists own up the assassination of the
defence minister.

The 51-year-old director reveals in the book that one of the characters in the film was inspired by how he was in his college days. The book also includes interviews with Aamir and Oscar-winning music director A R Rahman, who gave the score for the film and lyricist Prasoon Joshi .

“I had a question in my heart which I asked through RDB. It is definitely a special film because of what it became and how it touched the youth. The film was released on Republic Day and I feel honoured to launch it on the occasion of Independence
Day in the memory of our airborne warriors who laid down their lives for the country," Mehra said.

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