Nagarjuna explores Kandahar hijacking in new film

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Hyderabad:  The Kandahar hijacking of an Indian plane in 1999 seems to have suddenly become the hot topic in southern cinema.

First, the Malayalam star Mohanlal signed on with Amitabh Bachchan for Kandahar which was released in December last year. The film bombed at the box office. But now it is being made in Telugu and Tamil.

The Tamil version will be called Payanam, which means journey.  

And Telugu actor Nagarjuna will explore the same territory in Gaganam. "...the film is about the emotions of people for three days, both the passengers and the people who are negotiating for their release after the plane landed on the tarmac. How the government of India is reacting. It is all very emotional,'' says the actor.

Gaganam releases next month.

In December 1999, Pakistani terrorists hijacked a flight from Kathmandu to Delhi and forced IC 814 to land in Afghanistan. There were nearly 180 people on board.

Gaganam will come close on the heels of the success of Nagarjuna's last film, Ragada, which released in December had a Bollywood role model.

"Ragada was an out-and-out commercial movie with the regular mass formula which we have been following for ages in Indian cinema. I will compare Ragada with Dabangg. Dabangg, according to me, is another south Indian film,'' he says.

Nagarjuna's next big role - a revolutionary in Rajanna -  a film set in the Hyderabad Nizam's era.

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