Anurag Kashyap’s ‘Raman Raghav 2.0′ premieres at Cannes

May 16, 2016

A Bollywood film based on a real-life serial killer who preyed on victims living on the streets of Mumbai premiered at a sidebar event of the Cannes film festival on Monday.

Nawazuddin SiddiquiRaman Raghav 2.0,” director Anurag Kashyap‘s fictionalized retelling of a series of murders, features Nawazuddin Siddiqui as the killer and Vicky Kaushal as the police officer chasing him.

“First screening has begun. House is packed,” Kashyap tweeted as the non-competitive Director’s Fortnight screening got under way on the sidelines of the 69th Cannes film festival.

Raman Raghav is said to have bludgeoned over 40 victims to death in the 1960s in apparently motiveless murders.

“No killing is without reason. Even if the reason doesn’t seem justified to us, the killer justifies it in his head,” Siddiqui, who plays the serial killer in the film, told Reuters over the telephone.

“In my reading, Raman Raghav lived in his own world, where his actions were justified, and that is how I have tried to play him.”

In Kashyap’s modern-day retelling, the story turns into a battle between the serial killer and a troubled police officer.

Vicky KaushalKaushal, who plays the police officer, described “Raman Raghav 2.0″ as a crime thriller.

This is Kashyap’s third outing at the Director’s Fortnight. Both “Gangs of Wasseypur” and “Ugly” were also screened at the Cannes sidebar.

Indian film-makers have been bitten by the reality bug, and many movie studios are backing scripts based on real-life events — with some cinematic liberties.

This year, Bollywood will release biopics of cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni, an Indian man who died in a Pakistani prison, and wrestler Mahavir Phogat who coached his daughters to wrestling glory.

Azhar,” based on the life of former cricket captain Mohammad Azharuddin, opened in cinemas this month. Raja Krishna Menon’s “Airlift” and Ram Madhvani’s “Neerja“, both based on real-life incidents, were successful at the box office earlier this year.

“We are filling our movies with real-life characters, but you cannot do it as you please,” said Siddiqui.

“We need to focus on body language, their speech – we need to make it closer to reality. But it is good that we are telling these stories finally.”


(Editing by Tony Tharakan; Follow Shilpa on Twitter at @shilpajay and Tony at @TonyTharakan. This article is website-exclusive and cannot be reproduced without permission)

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