Even before his next film Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey releases, Ashutosh Gowariker has already moved on to his big budget project Buddha. Produced by Dr.Bhupendra Kumar Modi and directed by Gowariker, Buddha tells the journey of Gautam Buddha right from when he was known as Prince Siddhartha to his moment of enlightenment when he became Buddha. While the hunt for the actor who will play the lead role is still on, it’s quite interesting to note that the film will primarily have an all-international crew except production designer Nitin Chandrakant Desai who has worked with Gowariker on most of his films.
Some of the international crew members are:
David S. Ward (USA) – Screen writer (best known for his Oscar winning screenplay in The Sting and Sleepless in Seattle)
Michel Shane (USA) – Executive Producer (who is known for having worked on films like I Robot and Catch Me If You Can)
Karl Walter Lindenlaub (USA) – Director of Photography (German born Lindenlaub has done been the DOP on films such as Independence Day, The Jackal, The Princess Diaries, Maid in Manhattan, The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, Ninja Assassin)
April Ferry (USA) – Costume Designer (Academy Award, BAFTA and Emmy award winner who has worked on Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, Maverick, Free Willy, Frailty, National Security)
Glenn Boswell (AUS) – 2nd Unit director / Stunt coordinator (has worked on films like X-Men Wolverine, I, Robot, all three Matrix films, Dark City, The Island of Dr. Moreau, Thin Red Line)
Jarrod Linton(AUS) – Previz Supervisor (has worked on films like Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, The Da Vinci Code, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Troy, The Spirit, X-Men Wolverine)
David Russell (AUS) – Story Board artist (a renowned storyboard artist and illustrator having contributed to over 80 films including Hollywood blockbusters such as Star Wars, X-Men Wolverine, Batman, Terminator II, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Tombstone, Romeo & Juliet, Moulin Rouge)
Dileep Singh Rathore (IND/USA) – Co-producer / Line Producer (With over 20 years experience in producing and handling domestic and international productions, Dileep’s credits include Peter Weir’s upcoming release The Way Back, Disney’s Hexe Lilli, Warner Bros.’ Das Wilde Leben, Blood Diamond, and films such as City of Joy, Flames in Paradise, Maya, Return to Rajapur among others.)
Speaking on making a film with such a top-notch international crew, producer Dr.Modi says, “Buddha, is a truly global film and we needed a team that would have a global sensibility and transcend language barriers.”
Ashutosh Gowariker says, “The first important decision that Dr. Modi took was to make Buddha in English. And that got me immediately interested because I have always felt that when it comes to religion, you must cater to an international audience, especially so in the case of Buddha. The past two months of pre-production have been exciting.
It has been exhilarating to be working with the DOP Karl Walter Lindenlaub, Oscar nominated Costume Designer and Stunt Co-ordinator Glenn Boswell. The movies that these people have worked on are ones that I have admired and seen over and over again. So, I feel privileged to be working with them on Buddha.
This is the first time that I have done pre-visualisation for a film. It has been an amazing learning curve to be working with Jarrod Linton who is the pre-viz supervisor on the film.
Dr. Modi and his co-producer Dileep Singh Rathore are leaving no stone unturned to give me technicians of my choice that will help create 500 B.C. accurately on screen.”
As for the lead actor, Gowariker says, “The search for the actor to play Buddha continues. I am going through the hundreds of auditions that have come in and I must say, we are getting closer to our Buddha.”