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Anil Ambani to fund Hilsa

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By: Upula KBR, Mid-day
Thursday, June 21, 2007
If all goes well, a film called Hilsa will be Reliance honcho Anil Ambani's first Bollywood production. The film stars Naseeruddin Shah, Om Puri, Nandana Sen and Bengali actors Kharaj Mukherji and Baran. Jullian Era Max is producing the film.

The buzz is that Reliance has decided to finance the film after Adlabs backed out of the deal. Prama, one of the producers at Jullian Era Max, says, "We are in talks with him but it's is too early to say anything. We don't have the backing of a big name like Mr Amitabh Bachchan."

Prama also says that they are in the process of finalising a director. "Salim Bijnari, our lyricist, has expressed interest to direct the film but we have to be cautious as our company is new," he adds.

It's musical

So is it an arthouse sort of film? "No, it's musical 'parallel cinema'. Krishnamohan is our music director and we plan to take the film to an international level," says Prama adding, "Hilsa deals with the relationship between the hilsa fish (ilish maach) of West Bengal and fishermen." The film will be shot in West Bengal, along the Ganges River, at Diamond Harbor and Canning.

What is Hilsa?

Hilsa is an economically important tropical fish, and is an extremely popular delicacy among Bengalis. Its gradual disappearance from West Bengal has become a matter of concern for conservationists and government officials. Now, hilsa fish is available only in the monsoons.

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