Director Sudhir Mishra, the latest Bollywood director to tackle a retelling of Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay's celebrated novel Devdas, is set to release his version on February 16.
Titled, Daasdev, the film gives a modern twist to the doomed romance.
Mishra has set the story in the present-day India against the backdrop of hinterland politics. It features Richa Chadha as Paro, Aditi Rao Hydari as Chandni and Rahul Bhat as Dev.
"I admit that I took Devdas, I took the three characters Dev, Paro, and Chandramukhi. As I was working, Shakespeare intruded and I allowed him to, what could I do?
"Ultimately, it became a film about power as it gets into the way of love. It became a reverse journey because if Devdas is a journey from a noble person to a 'das', this is a journey from 'das', a person who is a slave to his addictions and the dynastic ambitions of his family, to Dev," Mishra said in a statement.
The "Hazaaron Khwahishen Aisi" director said his Paro is "a modern, spunky, interesting woman" who fights with the weapons she has and in the end, confronts Dev.
"That's how I've seen women and that's how I see Paro. In my idea, they have the right to be wrong and they have the right do wrong in order to do right. For me, they don't need to apologise for betrayal as men don't require to apologise for betrayals," he added.
Mishra said his Chandni is as close as she could get to Chandramukhi in present-day.
"She's the one who services the political forces of our time. The so-called modern semi-feudal upper-class families and the patriarchal world don't accept women like her.
"Even though they use them, they pretend not to know this very real money handler, fixer, manipulator..."
The movie is presented by Storm Pictures and backed by Saptarishi Cinevision production.
Devdas is one of the most adapted novels in Indian cinema.
Pramathesh Barua's 1936 adaptation, starring K L Saigal in the title role; Bimal Roy's 1955 take, featuring Dilip Kumar (in one of his most famous cinematic outings), Suchitra Sen, Vyjayanthimala and Motilal; Sanjay Leela Bhansali's grand adaptation in 2002 with Shahrukh Khan, Aishwarya Rai and Madhuri Dixit and Anurag Kashyap's 2009 post-modern take in Dev-D are the most known adaptations of the book. PTI