A woman tells Rahul Gandhi that she loves him because he taught his haters to accept him as their “beloved RaGa”. Gandhi, pleased, winks back. This is one of the many moments in the four-minute teaser of My Name Is Raga that claim to give a glimpse into the inner life of the Congress party president. Directed by Rupesh Paul, My Name Is Raga, according to a press release, has just gone on the floors.
Paul has to his credit the films My Mother’s Laptop (2008), Saint Dracula 3D (2012) and the unreleased Kamasutra 3D. “The movie has no intentions to glorify Rahul or to demystify him,” Paul said in the press release. “It’s the story of a coming back of a human being who had been ridiculously attacked. Anyone who has fearlessly confronted defeat and failure can relate to this story. In that sense, I don’t want to call this a biopic, it’s a story of any man who becomes unstoppable after he wins over a catastrophic life.”
The teaser shows the young Rahul Gandhi as a moody child, disturbed by the deaths of his grandmother, Indira Gandhi, and his father, Rajiv Gandhi. Fighting personal demons, naysayers and the Bharatiya Janata Party – a Narendra Modi lookalike appears in shots – Rahul Gandhi finally becomes the people’s leader, the teaser suggests. Aswini Kumar plays Gandhi, Himant Kapadiya is Modi and Raju Kher is former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (Kher’s brother, Anupam Kher, played the former prime minister in The Accidental Prime Minister), according to reports.
Paul previously attempted to make a biopic on Narendra Modi. Calling the project Namo 4D, Paul had told Rediff.com in January 2014, “It’s like the doubts the Jews had about Jesus Christ. Only after he was crucified, did they realise that he was the messiah”.
My Name Is Raga is the latest political biopic ahead of the 2019 general elections. In the making is a Narendra Modi biopic starring Vivek Oberoi in the lead role. Omung Kumar (Mary Kom, Bhoomi) is directing the film. Nithya Menen will be seen as former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa in The Iron Lady. Vidya Balan will star as Indira Gandhi in a web series based on journalist Sagarika Ghose’s biography.
Earlier in January, Rahul Gandhi got an unflattering portrayal in Vijay Ratankar Gutte’s The Accidental Prime Minister. Arjun Mathur played the Gandhi scion. The film’s release took place shortly after Krish’s NTR: Kathanayakudu, in which Telugu Desam Party member and actor Nandamuri Balakrishna starred as his father and the party’s founder, Telugu film legend NT Rama Rao.
A few weeks later, Nawazuddin Siddiqui played Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray in Thackeray, directed by Abhijit Panse. In Mahi V Raghav’s Yatra, Mammootty stars as former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy of the Congress party.