Deepa Mehta’s Videsh (English title: Heaven on Earth) will be released in India, on March 27, 2009.
Videsh will be released with an A certificate after the censor board objected to the brutality depicted in the movie and insisted that certain scenes be deleted.
Deepa Mehta has decided to go with the A certificate insisted of making changes to the movie.
Videsh stars Preity Zinta and newcomer Vansh Bharadwaj, with Balinder Johal, Rajinder Singh Cheema, Ramanjit Kaur and Yanna McIntosh.
Videsh is the story of a vivacious young woman, Chand, (Preity Zinta) from Punjab who is married off to Rocky (Vansh Bharadwaj) who lives with his joint family in Bramption, Ontario, Canada.
Once Chand goes to Canada, she is effectively cut off from her family and is completely at the mercy of an abusive husband, with a hair-trigger temper, and unsupportive in-laws. She has to contend with a controlling mother-in-law, who is extremely possessive of her son.
Rocky is frustrated with the increasing familial obligations, the discomfort of living with seven people in a two-bedroom house, four of which are his sister, her unemployed husband, and their two children, and the financial burden of bringing even more extended relatives to Canada.
He takes out his repressed rage on his young wife, who has no recourse but to put up with it.
Battered and broken, Chand takes succour in a fantasy world, disassociating herself from the pain, both physical and mental.
Because she is completed isolated in the strange land, she has no one to turn to. A glimmer of hope comes with Rosa (Yanna mcIntosh), a Jamaican woman, who gives Chand a magic root that she claims that can make any man fall in love.
The root not only fails to transform her husband into a loving man, but has supernatural effects, calling forth a Cobra that can shape-shift into a kinder version of her husband.
Videsh has been written and directed by Deepa Mehta, and produced by BR Films.
Videsh that was released in Canada, on October 24, 2008, went to the Toronto International Film Festival, the Edmonton International Film Festival, and the Kingston Canadian Film Festival.
Preity Zinta won the Best Actress (Silver Hugo) award at the 44th Chicago International Film Festival, for her role in Videsh. She has been nominated for the Genie Awards that will take place in April 2009.
Deepa Mehta’s body of work includes Sam and Me (1991), Camilla (1994), Fire (1996), Earth (1998), Bollywood Hollywood (2002), Republic of Love (2003), Water (2004), and Let’s Talk About It (2006).
She has also been nominated for an Academy award for the 2004 Water.
Deepa Mehta is currently working on a film adaptation of Salman Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children.
To read about other interesting Hindi film releases lined up for 2009, click here.