After playing the edgy villain Lallan Singh in Mani Ratnam's Yuva in 2004, Abhishek Bachchan is all set to return in a rougher-than-ever avatar as the outlaw Beera in Raavan, which is releasing on Friday.
Co-produced by Reliance BIG Pictures and Madras Talkies, the movie has been made at a budget of Rs 45 crore. It is releasing approximately across 3,000 screens worldwide.
A bilingual, the Hindi version of Raavan also stars Aishwarya Rai, Govinda, Nikhil Dwivedi and Tamil superstar Vikram.
The Tamil version of Raavan stars Vikram in the negative role alongside Prithviraj, Karthik and Prabhu Ganesan. Aishwarya plays the same character in both versions.
"When I met Abhishek for the first time during Yuva, I was so worried because he was so proper and straightforward. I had to ask him to learn bad words and be abusive all the time as Beera is that badly behaved character," said Ratnam, who is teaming up with the actor for the third time after Guru.
Raavan revolves around Ragini (Aishwarya) and Dev (Vikram).
Dev is a cop who falls in love with Ragini, a spunky classical dancer who is as unconventional as him. Eventually they get married and Dev moves to Lal Maati, a small town in northern India.
On reaching Lal Maati, Dev realises that the word of law there is not the police, but Beera, a tribal who has shifted the power equation of the place from the government to the havenots.
Dev wants to put things in order and he knows that to achieve his goal he will have to vanquish the big fish, in this case Beera.
In one master stroke he manages to rip open Beera’s world and sets in motion a chain of events that claim lives and change fortunes.
Beera's sister gets killed in the mayhem and to avenge that, he abducts Ragini and hides in the jungle. Thus starts a journey that forces all three to face the truth and test their beliefs, convictions and emotions.
Said to be modern retelling of the epic Ramayana, the movie projects a battle between good (Dev) and evil (Beera). However, the line dividing good and evil starts to blur fast and apparently Ragini who portrays Sita, develops a soft corner for her abductor.
Noteworthy is that all three actors have performed death defying stunts in the movie like climbing cliffs, jumping from them, getting drenched under a waterfall for hours or being suspended from a bridge for hours.
"Mani would never let us do something that is risky and it is only for love and respect for him that we would do anything that he asked us to do," said Abhishek and Aishwarya in unison.
While Abhishek sports a buzz cut and edgy look in the movie, wife Aishwarys sports completely no-make-up look.
The music of the movie is already topping the charts with numbers like Beera Beera, Behene de and Ranjha Ranjha courtesy lyrics by the legendary Gulzar and music by A.R. Rahman.
Raavan will have its London premiere on June 16.