Viacom 18 Motion Pictures, the co-producers of Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s purported magnum opus Padmavati are not only going ahead with the release as per plan on 17 November, they also intend to unleash an unprecedented number of prints on the Indian movie going public.
A source close to the producers reveals mind-boggling release and marketing plans for Padmavati. “It will open on approximately 8,000 screens in India alone. That is 500 more screens than Baahubali: The Conclusion. That makes Padmavati the most widely circulated Hindi film ever. It will also be screened abroad on a scale never seen before.”
That isn’t all. The producers and director Sanjay Leela Bhansali plan a dubbed English-language version of the film for selected European and American outlets. And no, the songs and dances — Bhansali’s forte — won’t be trimmed out of the English version of Padmavati.
Says Sanjay Bhansali, “I’ve been proud of our song-and-dance culture. My protagonists will always sing, and dance too, when the emotions are high. We Indians are like that only… emotional and demonstrative. The West had better accept us the way we are.”
Emotional and demonstrative may all be very well. But that’s not the way Bhansali’s lead pair Deepika Padukone and Ranveer Singh are expected to be when the film’s promotion and marketing starts in October.
According to the elaborate marketing strategy planned, Ranveer and Deepika who are said to be a real-life couple and who play historical antagonists in Padmavati and who never meet during the course of the story, will promote the film separately.
“Deepika Padukone will promote Padmavati with Shahid Kapoor who plays her husband while Ranveer Singh will be seen at all promotional events with Aditi Rao Hydari who plays his wife in Padmavati. In this way, the two couples will be suitably strategised in the public mind before the release,” says the well informed source.
As for rumours of the release date of Padmavati being postponed, Ajit Andhare the COO of Viacom 18 puts an end to the speculations with two words, “Not true.”
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