Despite being home to a diverse population, an interest in movie and sports is something you would find common in all. Keeping the interest in mind, a number of filmmakers are blending the two by telling the story of popular sports stars. It interests both movies buffs and sports lovers as often we see the success of the sports star but is unaware of the hardships they go through to reach that place. These are stories that will inspire several generations to come.
Moreover, the success of biographical movies on sports stars like Bhag Milkha Bhag, Mary Kom, M.S Dhoni-The Untold Story, Dangal and Sachin-A million dreams are making the filmmakers take up more biographical films on Indian sports stars. In fact, the worldwide collection of Dangal alone is Rs 2,000 crore, the movie that was based on the life of Phogat sisters-Geeta Phogat and Babita Phogat.
So, on the occasion of 'National Sports Day' that is celebrated on August 29 to commemorate the birth anniversary of 'The Wizard' aka Dhyan Chand, let's have a look at the movies on Indian sports stars that are lined up:
Untitled biopic on Saina Nehwal
A movie is coming up on Saina Nehwal-the first Indian badminton player to win an Olympic medal. The film will be directed by Amol Gupte and the lead role will be played by Shraddha Kapoor.
"Most girls have played badminton at some point in their lives in school. I feel so lucky to be playing Saina, who's not just been the world's No. 1 badminton player, but is also a youth icon. I can't wait to start prepping for my role," Shraddha told TOI.
While Saina Nehwal said, "I was aware of the film, yes, but I didn't know about the casting. It's great if Shraddha plays me because she is a very talented actress and very hardworking. I am sure she will do justice to the role. The best part is, she is a good friend as well. So it will be easier to teach her some badminton skills. A lot of people did tell me that we do look similar and I think that's a huge compliment, because Shraddha is very good looking."
Reema Kagti's Gold starring Akshay Kumar is a biopic on the life of hockey player Balbir Singh-- the unsung hero under whose captaincy India won three consecutive Olympic Gold Medals in hockey. The actor reportedly started shooting in London for the movie. Also, television actress Mouni Roy will debut in Bollywood with this movie which also features Kunal Kapoor and Amit Sadh in important roles. It is scheduled to be released on Independence Day in 2018.
Biopic on Abhinav Bindra
Another biopic on India's ace shooter and Olympics gold medalist Abhinav Bindra will soon be made. Harshvardhan Kapoor, is rumoured to be playing the lead role in this biopic and Anil Kapoor, will portray his dad on-screen. Director Kannan Iyer will helm this film.
"It's too early to speak about the film. Once everything is finalised, I'll talk about it. But talks are on. If God wishes, we will do a film together and it could be this one. I am very excited to work with him, but it is too early to speak about it," Anil Kapoor told Indian Express. Reportedly, the biopic is scheduled to go on floors by October.
Biopic on Murlikant Petkar
There is another biopic coming up on Murlikant Petkar- an army man who later went on to become a sportsman and won a Gold medal before he became a Paralympic Gold medallist in freestyle swimming and also participated in javelin, precision javelin throw and other events. Sushant Singh Rajput is all set to star in this biopic. The movie is tentatively titled Murli: The Unsung Hero.
PV Sindhu biopic
Actor Sonu Sood ventured into production with the film Tutak Tutak Tutiya and is now prepping for a biopic on the life of ace badminton player PV Sindhu. The actor reportedly said, "I would love to see Deepika playing character of Sindhu in my film. She is a fine actress. We are still in scripting stage. If the part is offered to her and she likes the script and director, and has the time for it, she will surely give her nod."
Daughter of superstar Rajinikanth and filmmaker Aishwarya Rajinikanth Dhanush is all set to make her next Tamil directorial on Indian Paralympic high jumper Mariyappan Thangavelu. The film's first look was released by Shah Rukh Khan on January 1.
The tagline of the film reads, "The world may think you can't, what you think is what matters."
Untitled Biopic on Pullela Gopichand
Indian-American filmmaker Praveen Sattaru is all set to do a Telugu-Hindi biopic on Badminton champion Pullela Gopichand. The project will reportedly roll from October. Gopichand, who guided PV Sindhu as well as Saina Nehwal to Olympic medals, will be portrayed by Telugu actor Sudheer Babu in the film.
"I'm kicked about the film. I'm confident I can do justice to the role because I'm a trained badminton player. I have been playing for many years and I understand the sensibilities of the character better than anyone," Sudheer told IANS.