Actor Ajay Devgn confirmed on Tuesday that he will play ancient Indian scholar and political strategist Chanakya in a film directed by Neeraj Pandey. Produced by Plan C Studios, a joint venture of Reliance Entertainment and Friday Filmworks (founded by Pandey and Shital Bhatia), Chanakya will mark Devgn’s first collaboration with Pandey, whose film credits include A Wednesday (2008), Baby (2015) and Aiyaary (2018).

“I have been developing this film on Chanakya for quite some time now. It’s an exciting work of passion for me, and I am sure the audiences will love Ajay in his portrayal of the visionary genius,” Pandey said in a statement.

“Epic characters such as Chanakya have an everlasting sense of mystery and legend around them,” Reliance Entertaiment’s Shibashish Sarkar said. “We have no doubt that the movie Chanakya will be received enthusiastically by modern audiences, providing serious insights into the art of running a state, based on the practical learning and teachings of the greatest master himself – Chanakya.”

Chanakya, an advisor to Mauryan emperor Chandragupta, authored the Arthashatra, an ancient Indian political treatise on statecraft. His story has recreated several times, including in Dwijendralal Ray’s 1911 play Chandragupta, the 1977 Telugu film Chanakya Chandragupta as well as in multiple television series, the most recent being Colors TV’s Chakravartin Ashoka Samrat (2015).