After making two successive and successful period films, Sanjay Leela Bhansali is now rumoured to be planning film on the life of legendary musician Baiju Bawra.
According to the portal PeepingMoon.com, Bhansali is planning to remake legendary filmmaker Vijay Bhatt’s Baiju Bawra (1952), that starred Bharat Bhushan and Meena Kumari.
However, the question of remaking Baiju Bawra doesn’t arise as Bhatt’s musical was inspired by the 15th century musician.
As per an industry veteran, Narendra Hirawat of NH Studioz held the rights of the film’s negative. It has been more than 60 years since Baiju Bawra was released and the rights have now lapsed. Any filmmaker is free to make free a film on Baiju Bawra.
As per Susheela Misra’s book Some Immortals of Hindustani Music, Baiju was said to have been born as Baijinath Mishra in a poor Brahmin family in Champaner, Gujarat Sultanate. Misra learnt music under the tutelage of Swami Haridas.
Baiju achieved fame in the court of Raja Man Singh Tomar of Gwalior. He was christened Bawra (crazy) for his obsession with classical music. His duel with Tansen is said to be the stuff of legends.
After Padmaavat (2018), there is no clarity on what Bhansali has taken up as his next project. Names like Shah Rukh Khan and Deepika Padukone have been bounced around as artistes, but the filmmaker hasn’t announced anything on his next yet.
Given his fascination for history and successful record, a grand retelling of Baiju Bawra’s story cannot be ruled out.
For the record, despite the scepticism surrounding a film with classical music as its theme, Baiju Bawra was a resounding success, completing 100 weeks in theatres.