2008 - This was the year when Farhan Akhtar made his debut as an actor with Rock On!! The film was a good success and post that Farhan went on to do 8 more films as an actor, the last being Rock On 2. Well, life has now come back full circle for the director-actor since the film with which he was actually supposed to make his debut as an actor, The Fakir of Venice, is finally gearing up for release.
"That was way back in 2008 when the film was originally planned for release," informs our source, "Though he had directed films like Dil Chahta Hai (2001), Lakshya (2004) and Don (2006) by then, he also thought of facing the camera. He decided to do that for an offbeat film The Fakir of Venice which also marked the debut of director Anand Surapur. An offbeat film, it was finished in quick time. However, there was never any definite release plan for it, especially in India. Meanwhile, Farhan also acted in Rock On!! and rest, as they say, is history."
The Fakir of Venice did make rounds of some international film festivals though from 2009 onwards. However, there were never any definitive plans around its theatrical release. "Meanwhile, Farhan continued to pick some other Bollywood assignments and did films like Luck By Chance, Karthik Calling Karthik and Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara under his own banner. He hit the high notes with the Rs. 100 crore winner, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag."
While it seemed that The Fakir of Venice was forgotten, it is now rather surprising to see the film eventually coming back into the limelight.
"Yes, it has been revived and is now being planned for March 10, release," our source confirms, "The film also stars Annu Kapoor, who is actually playing the title role of Fakir."
Incidentally, 10th March is also the date when Karan Johar's Badrinath Ki Dulhania is set for release.
"The two films are totally different," comments a trade observer, "The Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt starrer is a light hearted romantic music entertainer. On the other hand The Fakir of Venice (obviously picking its title from William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice) is a black comedy with dialogues in both English and Hindi. The two films are totally poles apart."
As for strictly academic interests, one waits to see how Farhan Akhtar faced the camera in his initial days. That would indeed make for an interesting observation for sure, especially when he has pitched himself opposite none other than a seasoned accomplished actor like Annu Kapoor.