You may have seen the 1987 Gary Goddard live action adaptation of Masters of the Universe starring Dolph Lundgren and Frank Langella, but have you seen Bollywood He-Man? Chahiye He Man He Man from Nafrat Ki Aandhi was released in 1989. Watch a video clip after the jump.
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According to a piece in the New York Times, Warner Bros. have gone so far as to place adverts in Indian newspapers and film trade publications warning against the plagiarism of The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. Of course, this isn’t some wild pre-preemptive measure, with Button randomly selected as an example. In fact, as reported in the Times of India last month, there is a Hindi film in production that shares some (vague) similarities with David Fincher’s sentimental potboiler.
Action Replay has been in production since mid-March with Akshay Kumar starring as a man who reverse-ages. He goes all the way from 62, back to… the age of 26. So that’s one key difference already. There’s a lot of other business that’s clearly very different too…
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Is Bollywood remaking Back to the Future? RealBollywoodNews is reporting that Akshay Kumar and Aishwarya Rai have been cast in Action Replay (yeah, horrible title…), a film which will be unofficially based on the popular 1985 Robert Zemeckis film Back to the Future. BTTF.com was able to contact Future producer/screenwriter Bob Gale who denied any knowledge of the production.
Bollywood has a long history of “borrowing” film storylines from popular Hollywood films (google “bollywood star wars”). The ages of the two leads (41 and 35 respectfully) confirm that it won’t be a close adaptation. Action Replay will begin production in February 2009.
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Forget Hollywood, Bollywood is the new red. It is only a matter of time before we see the first Bollywood film cross over and connect with American audiences. And who knows, maybe the film will feature American stars, filmmakers and or writers. When I talked to Slumdog Millionaire director Danny Boyle in September, he told me that Will Smith had visited India a couple times over the last year in hopes of starring in a Bollywood film. After seeing Slumdog, I have since become more and more interested in Bollywood. It now seems rather odd that we haven’t yet seen a big crossover or collaboration.
Now THR reports that Taxi Driver and Raging Bull screenwriter Paul Schrader has decided to write and direct a Bollywood action film titled Extreme City. Schrader points to the cold financial climate as one of the reasons he is moving to India, which will offer more creative freedom and a new audience. Extreme City is described as “a cross-cultural tale that will center on an American man who travels to India to help resolve a kidnapping case for his father-in-law, only to get caught up in a gangster plot.” The script will likely feature musical numbers, and Schrader is already in talks with a bunch of Bollywood stars.