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Sita, Adipurush, Mythoverse: Filmmakers Give Indian Mythology a Contemporary Touch

·4-min read

Mythology binds the past, present and the future. It is also a bridge between the divine and the human and our sole way of connecting with the rich traditional legacy that has been passed on to us over centuries in text and an interpretative way.

While the newer generation finds ways to keep the soul and significance of our heritage alive, filmmakers are coming up with contemporary ways to preserve and present our mytho heroes and demons for the posterity. The genre of mythology has been predominantly active in TV and continues to attract audiences even today. Now, Bollywood also seems invested in reviving this genre for the big screen and worldwide audiences. Biggest names from the film industry are being roped in to widen the canvass, not just in India but worldwide. Simultaneously, there seems to be an inherent promise of use of cutting edge-technology in presentation and style of such projects as the scale gets huge.

Prabhas and Saif Ali Khan starrer Adipurush, one of the most anticipated films to be coming out, is a modern day retelling of epic Ramayana. Om Raut, whose vision catapulted Tanhaji: The Unsung Warrior, a VFX heavy film, to great success will be sure to use the best of tech for this humongous project.

Not just the visual effects department, Adipurush will also be expected to break new barriers in the story interpretation. The movie announcement post hinted that Ravana, played by Saif, will be given prominence. “7000 years ago existed the world’s most intelligent demon,” read a small brief of Ravana’s character, while Adipurush hinges on the fight between good vs evil.

On the other hand, Sita: The Incarnation has been announced recently with Kangana Rananut in the lead role of the Hindu Goddess. This will also be the first time that mythology will be presented from the point of view of a female protagonist. It may be expected to touch upon newer facets of Sita’s role in mythology, beyond her vanvasa and abduction by Ravana, the demon.

The Immortal Ashwatthama with Vicky Kaushal is based on the Mahabharata character of Ashwatthama, who has been a lesser known face in the Hindu epic. What this movie relies upon in terms of story is not known but may certainly be a anti-heroical look at the state of affairs. Ashwatthama will be the first time that mytho and superhero genre blend. At the outset it was described by the makers as, “Raising the bar higher for the superhero genre not only in India but across the world, this film is a high-concept visual spectacle in the making.”

Then, big budget Mythoverse is expected to reach global audiences and will incorporate newer elements in storytelling. It is also the first Hollywood-like cinematic universe to be formally announced in India and will present our rich culture to global audiences. Producer Madhu Mantena has confirmed that the film series, initially consisting of three titles, will have a budget in the upwards of Rs 600 crore. Hearsay is since it is a pan-India project, biggest names from the South film industry are also being considered, even Mahesh Babu.

Deepika Padukone is playing Draupadi of Mahabharata. It is yet another film based on a female protagonist in the Hindu myhthology. Draupadi has been emblematic of tolerance and sacrifice and a possible film from her point of view is much-needed for today’s time. It can be very impactful for the future generations as well.

Not just these confirmed movie announcements, film title and character names also have a mythological bent. In RRR, Alia Bhatt’s character is named Sita and her first look shows a pious and poised Alia, almost divine-like.

Kartik Aaryan will be featuring in a romance film from director Sameer Vidwans, which was erstwhile titled Satyanarayan Ki Katha, a direct reference to Lord Vishnu. Now, the film title has been changed but initially it garnered huge interest.

Scam 1992 fame actor Pratik Gandhi’s latest movie was until sometime ago titled Raavan Leela, a direct reference to the Ramayana character. Such titles not only provide an instant connect with the audience but also certainly raise a curiosity.

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