Osama Bin Laden movie to be filmed in India

 

Delhi

There were disagreements about the details – one said Rajasthan, another said Punjab – but the Indian media was in agreement yesterday that movie director Kathryn Bigelow is poised to film parts of her new movie about Osama Bin Laden here, rather than in Pakistan.

A flurry of reports said security concerns had led the director and her team to decide that filming inside Pakistan was unsafe. Instead they will recreate the al-Qa’ida leader’s Abbottabad compound, where he spent more than five years living a mile from a Pakistani military academy, in northern India, where the landscapes are not dissimilar.

Last night there was no word from the camp of Oscar-winner Ms Bigelow, who is to cast Kyle Chandler, Jessica Chastain, Joel Edgerton, Mark Strong and Édgar Ramírez in the film, due to be released later in the year.

It appears the reports were at least partly based on an interview Ms Chastain, who appeared in the films The Help and The Debt, recently gave to a Hollywood news website, JustJared. In the interview, she said she had been working on Ms Bigelow’s movie in Jordan and has just returned and as a result was suffering from jetlag. “After the Oscars, I go to India to shoot more of the exteriors for the film,” she said. “The script is so incredible but they’re keeping it really quiet. Even my manager and agents haven’t read it.”

In India, the Mail Today newspaper quoted an anonymous film industry source in Mumbai as saying: “Bigelow wanted a backdrop that resembles Abbottabad. Since shooting in Pakistan is out of question, so she seems to have settled on India. Most probably, filming will be done in parts of Rajasthan in March.”

The source added: “The team did a recce of western Punjab and Rajasthan over several weeks. They seem to prefer Rajasthan.”

If the reports are true, it will not be the first time that Indian backdrops have been called upon to stand in for those across the border. When Michael Winterbottom was filming his 2007 movie A Mighty Heart, about the murder of journalist Daniel Pearl, parts were shot in the Indian cities of Mumbai and Pune. Sections were also filmed in Karachi, the city where Mr Pearl was kidnapped and murdered in 2002.

If filming does indeed proceed in India it will be a boost to the country after several other major projects were stopped. Recently, Indian railways blocked a plan by the James Bond movie franchise to film part of a forthcoming film starring Daniel Craig in India. Before that, a proposal to shoot sections of the Batman film The Dark Knight Rises was also stopped.

Reports in the film industry media say that Ms Bigelow, who won a best director Oscar for her 2008 film The Hurt Locker, has so far refrained from announcing who will play what role in the film. There has, understandably, been intense speculation about who will get to play the al-Qa’ida leader, though other reports have suggested that the Bin Laden character may not actually appear in the movie.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Sheridan Maine: Accounts Assistant

£25,000 - £30,000: Sheridan Maine: Are you looking for a fantastic opportunity...

Neil Pavier: Commercial Analyst

£50,000 - £55,000: Neil Pavier: Are you a professionally qualified commercial ...

Loren Hughes: Financial Accountant

£45,000 - £55,000: Loren Hughes: Are you looking for a new opportunity that wi...

Sheridan Maine: Finance Analyst

Circa £45,000-£50,000 + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a newly qualified ac...

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor