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Vishal Bhardwaj to begin Shakespearean comedy trilogy with adaptation of Twelfth Night


The project, now named Chaudhvin Ki Raat, will be the fourth one among Bhardwaj's Shakespearean films which include Maqbool (2004), Omkara (2006), Haider (2016). 

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After the sudden illness of actor Irrfan Khan caused his film on Sapna Didi to be pushed back, director Vishal Bhardwaj has turned back to William Shakespeare for inspiration. The actor has reportedly settled on the Bard's famous comedy, Twelfth Night, as the subject of his next adaptation. Bhardwaj has already made three critically acclaimed adaptations of Macbeth (Maqbool, 2004), Othello (Omkara, 2006) and Hamlet (Haider, 2014). 

The Times of India quoted the director as saying, "I have had a lot of people come up to me and ask me when am I going to adapt a Shakespearean comedy for the big screen. The first film in the trilogy will be based on Twelfth Night. The film will be called Chaudhvin Ki Raat." The director also revealed that the film will be set in contemporary times, and will cover a litany of subjects from politics and culture to music in contemporary India. 

The play is one of Shakespeare's renowned comedies and is known by the title of Twelfth Night or What You Will, and revolves around the case of mistaken identity, love, and independence. The subject will also form the first of three comedies that the director plans to adapt from Shakespeare. The same report quotes him as saying, "For a long time now, I have been meaning to start my first film as part of a trilogy based on Shakespearean comedies. My films on his tragedies have received acclaim; they are part of the curriculum in many universities."

Bhardwaj had announced a film based on author S Hussain Zaidi and Jane Borges's book Mafia Queens of Mumbai starring Deepika Padukone in the lead role, and Khan. However, Khan's sudden revelation that he has neuroendocrine tumour meant that the project had to be postponed to a later date till he bounces back to health. It seems that the director will also turn to frequent collaborator lyricist-director Gulzar on the project.