Saroo Brierley wants Shah Rukh Khan to play him in Hindi version of Lion 

Brierley believes that Lion could easily be remade in Hindi, exploring a different angle of his real-life story.

Shah Rukh Khan photo: Shutterbugs Images

Suparna Thombare

Saroo Brierley was recently in India to promote the Oscar-nominated film Lion, based on his book ‘A Long Way Home’ (about his real-life story), and got the chance to catch up with him at the launch of the film’s preview on the theatre-on-demand platform Vakaao.

While speaking about the acclaim and accolades that Dev Patel, Sunny Pawar and Nicole Kidman-starrer has received internationally, Brierley expressed that his story also lends itself quite naturally to a Hindi film.

“I am a visionist. When I see things, I don’t see them half-heartedly, I see the full way... that it would penetrate a lot of people. I see it being made with a different angle as well. It's still telling the same story but it's darker (referring to Lion). There is so much you can do with the story,” said Brierley, adding that a lot of portions from his book had to be left out in the Hollywood film, which could be explored if it is remade in Hindi.

Lion tells the story of five-year-old Saroo who gets lost on a train while scavenging for food with his older brother, which takes him thousands of miles across India, away from home and family. Saroo has to survive alone in Kolkata, before ultimately being adopted by an Australian couple, and later embarks on a journey to find his biological mother and family. 

Talking about a real possibility of the film being made for the Indian audiences, Brierley says, “Maybe in a couple years it might become a possibility. I think people of India will be amazed. I think a lot of people in India relate to the story of a hero... 30 years ago, two brothers on the train and all that.”

When asked who he sees playing his character in the movie, Brierley was quick to suggest he’d love his favourite movie star “Shah Rukh Khan” to essay the role. And when it comes to playing his girlfriend’s part, he said, “Deepika Padukone, Aishwarya Rai... Preity Zinta.... there are so many amazing actresses."

"You never know," he adds, with a laugh.

Directed by Garth Davis, Lion has six nominations at the 89th Academy Awards to be held on Sunday, 26 February. It will be released in India on 24 February.