BORN TO BE KING
A NEW PUNJABI FLICK RELEASING THIS FEBRUARY
If thrillers with a Bollywood twist are your thing, then the latest film from producer Sudhir Sharma, directed by Satyajeet Puri – Born To Be King – will not disappoint!
Set in stunning locations across London and India, the film explores the contentious subject of drug trafficking in Punjab, while addressing deep rooted corruption within the corridors of political powers.
Featuring a cast of British and Indian talent, including Ateesh Randev, Puneet Issar, Deana Uppal, and Sonam Bajwa, the film follows the trials and tribulations of a young British man Balraj (Ateesh Randev), who goes to Punjab with his grandfather Bhagat Singh (Puneet Issar) to ‘find himself’, following years of living a directionless life with endless partying and frivolity. In so doing, he not only makes a new life for himself, but also brings about significant change for the local people.
Born To Be King highlights the harsh realties of the underground drug world in India. Statistics show that there is one drug addict in 65 percent of families in the Punjab, and a worrying 73 percent of rural youth are addicted to drugs. These numbers are disproportionate to the level of care available; with only one rehabilitation centre per district, and only 12 anti-narcotic officers for 21 districts.
Through a gripping yet entertaining plot, using comedy as a vehicle to display a need for social reform, the film is a window into the underground world of drug trafficking in the Punjab, and the Indian government’s apathy towards its prevention.
The cast includes; Ateesh Randev who plays protagonist Balraj. Making his Bollywood debut alongside legendary Rishi Kapoor in Sambar Salsa, Ateesh has studied acting in both Mumbai and London. He has a number of projects in the pipeline for 2016 including work in Punjab, Mumbai and the US.
The film also stars Sonam Bajwa as Preeti, Balraj’s love interest. Prior to landing her first lead role in Born To Be King, Sonam made her debut in Best of Luck with Gippy Grewal and Jazzy B, her second film was with Diljit Dosanjh in Punjab 1984. Sonam’s role in Born To Be King has led to a number of opportunities, including starring as the lead role in Sardarji 2. Deana Uppal, who is best known for her appearance in Big Brother UK in 2013 and Fear Factor: Khatron Ke Khiladi, takes on the role of Serena, Balraj’s love interest in London. The Former Miss India UK (2012) is no stranger to the limelight and has carved a successful career for herself as a model in the British Asian scene, as well as signing films in India.
Actor Puneet Issar, who is best known for his work directing Garv: Pride and Honour (2004) starring Salman Khan, plays Balraj’s grandfather Bhagat Singh, who acts as his moral guide and encourages him to follow the right path. Puneet has starred in many notable films including, Superman (1987) and even featured in epic TV series, Mahabharat (1990) as Duryodhan. Puneet also starred alongside Amitabh Bachchan in Coolie (1983). He then turned his hand to writing, penning the 2011 hit I Am Singh, and has more recently appeared in Big Boss 2015.
Ranjeet, who is best known in the industry for taking on roles of the archetypal villain, plays Jagdish Thakur. Ranjeet has worked on a number of Punjabi films, including Man Jeete Jag Jeet; Born To Be King is his most recent venture.
The film also features special appearances from Rana Sodhi, a well-known public figure in India, making his acting debut, and Sudhir Sharma, a businessman turned filmmaker, who produced Born To Be King.
Born To Be King bravely takes on government corruption and indifference towards India’s growing drug problem. The film aims to appeal to a wide audience, highlighting the pressures of growing up as a third generation British Asian, while simultaneously celebrating Indian culture.
The film will be released in key London cinemas on Friday 4th March 2016.