Mani is in merry

India's best known director Mani Ratnam and his Madras Talkies has signed a record Rs 120 crore deal with the Anil Ambani run Reliance Entertainment Big Picture, for his new untitled film in three languages- Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.

Mani sir as he is affectionately known in Kollywood has been quietly working on the script of this film, since the release of his super hit *Guru* in January 2007.

The Hindi version will feature Abhishek Bachchan- Aishwarya Rai and Govinda in a negative role. The Tamil and Telugu version will have Vikram doing Abhishek's role while Aishwarya Rai will be the common heroine for all the three versions. It is going to be a tight rope walk for her as she has to juggle her dates with Shankar's Rajinikanth extravaganza 'Robot', during the same period.

And the role being done by Govinda would be essayed by Pritviraj, who actually started his career in Tamil in a villain's role in *Kana Kandein*. There are rumours that Karthik who last worked with Mani in *Agninakshthram*, will also be roped in to play an important role. Priya Mani too will be playing a role in the film which will start rolling in Karaikudi from
September 10, and will also be shot in the forests of Madhya Pradesh.

Mani's all time favourite and his 'discovery' A.R Rahman will be composing songs for this film which has now become one of the hottest projects in the country. Ace cameraman Manikandan who is now shooting for Priyadarsan's *Biloo Barber* in Pollachi will be the cameraman.

Mani sir as usual was unavailable for comment and Reliance Entertainment Big Picture spokesman in Chennai too refused to talk about the deal.