Bollywood Film Chronicles Mumbai Attack

'Total Ten' sentences lone gunman before real trial ends.

June 16, 2009, 5:53 AM

NEW DELHI, India, June 16, 2009 — -- It took Hollywood nearly five years to open its first feature film on the attacks of 9/11. Bollywood moves at a much faster pace: Its first film on last year's Mumbai attacks will be completed within nine months of the deadly events.

"Total Ten," based on the Nov. 26 attacks, is expected to finish production this summer. What's more, at least 15 film titles related to the attacks have been registered with the Indian Motion Pictures Producers Association.

Bollywood, as the Hindi-language film industry based in Mumbai (formerly Bombay) is known, is the world's most prolific.

"Total Ten" will chronicle the story of Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab, the alleged lone captured gunman in the Mumbai attacks in which more than 170 people were killed. The movie will also highlight the response of the Mumbai police.

"It's entirely based on facts with some Masala [spice] added to make it interesting," said Sugath Kumar, one of the film's producers.

So far, the low-budget film boasts no famous Bollywood actors, but the producer says the actor playing Kasab is a "look-alike" of the infamous face.

While Bollywood is known for hours-long films featuring dramatic love stories full of song and dance, the industry offers its share of films revolving around murder and mystery.

Spoiler Alert: This film is expected to raise controversy because, at the end, Kasab is prosecuted and hanged.

In real life, Kasab's trial is being conducted in Mumbai with only a judge and no jury because of security fears. Charges against him include "waging war" on India and, if convicted, he faces the death penalty.

The trial was delayed several times in the past few months after Kasab's court-appointed defense attorney was dismissed because of "professional misconduct." After another delay, a new attorney was appointed and the trial is expected to last at least four more months, meaning that the real outcome of the trial will be determined after "Top Ten's" expected run at the theaters.

Filmmakers Purport to Show the Inevitable

"Top Ten's" producers say their film will not affect the outcome of the trial; they said they are only showing the inevitable.

"The outcome of the trial is a known fact," producer Kumar said. "It's just that the government is going through the motions and making it look as just and transparent as possible. Kasab will be hanged. However long the law takes, we are just showing the eventuality. That's it."

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