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Amin Hajee aka Bagha of Lagaan makes directorial debut with Koi Jaane Naa

Hajee's film will feature Kunal Kapoor and Amyra Dastur. 

Amyra Dastur, Amin Hajee, Kunal Kapoor

Keyur Seta

The name Amin Hajee might not ring a bell, but the mute character Bagha in Ashutosh Gowariker’s classic Lagaan: Once Upon A Time In India (2001) is still fresh in the minds of audiences. After playing quite a few supporting characters and writing a few films, Hajee will now be making his directorial debut with Koi Jaane Naa (2019).

The film is a psychological thriller featuring Kunal Kapoor and Amyra Dastur and is produced by Bhushan Kumar’s banner T-Series.

Although Hajee has acted in many films, his ultimate dream has always been directing a film. “Ever since I can remember I have always wanted to direct my own film, right from when I assisted Mazhar Khan on Gang in 1988, which was a life changing experience. But then I began a journey of dancing and acting, a journey I loved,” he said in an official statement.

Hajee (extreme left) in Lagaan (2001)

The best thing that happened to him, according to Hajee, was Lagaan and Swades: We The People (2004). He was screenplay writer on the latter.

“Aamir Khan and Ashutosh have been instrumental throughout my journey in films, in pushing me to achieve much more than I thought possible. Their belief in me has driven me forward,” he said. After the acclaim Swades received, Hajee became more curious to direct a film after he realized that it provides highest creative satisfaction.

Hajee shared that he got the story idea of Koi Jaane Naa from a short story he came across. He narrated the story to both Khan and Gowariker and they felt he should make his directorial debut with it. However, he had to wait for six years to get a producer on board.

“But it was worth waiting for,” said Hajee. “I believe I have the perfect producer in T-Series. They were very excited when they heard the script as I have seven songs in the film. And each song is like a scene that takes the story forward. Every song has its own purpose and meaning and this was very exciting for T-Series.”

Koi Jaane Naa went on the floors last week. The film will be out in theatres on 11 October.