With the new avatar of the popular Mile Sur Mera Tumhara song — which won the hearts of millions of Indians in the ’90s — getting a lukewarm response, its makers are planning a revised version featuring Sachin Tendulkar and other cricket icons.
Phir Mile Sur, the new version which launched on January 26, has received mixed reactions from people and critics alike, with the main grouse being that it is too long and looks too “Bollywood-centric.” The makers are now planning a revised and shorter version of the song.
Interestingly, the video currently on air does not feature any member of the Indian cricket team.
Ad filmmaker Kailash Surendranath, director of the unity-in-diversity song, said he would soon shoot the song with Mr. Tendulkar.
“Very soon we will see Sachin in the edited version of Phir Mile Sur. He is keen to do the song. We tried to get him as well as other cricketers earlier, but they were busy playing back-to-back matches and, moreover, we were under pressure to release the song on the Republic Day,” Mr. Surendranath told PTI.
Phir Mile Sur has been produced by private television channel Zoom TV, unlike the 1988 version of the song which was produced by Suresh Mullick of the now defunct autonomous body Lok Seva Sanchar Parishad.
On criticism that due credit was not given to Mr. Mullick, Mr. Surendranath said, “It is not necessary to give him credit. But there is no harm in giving credit to the great man and may be the edited version could have his name in the credits.”
The song — shot with more than 60 personalities including actors Amitabh Bachchan, Shah Rukh Khan and Aamir Khan, sports stars Saina Nehwal and Vijender Singh and several musicians — was officially released by Mr. Bachchan on January 26.
Mr. Surendranath hinted at the possibility of updating the new version from time to time with the inclusion of more personalities. Many have found Phir Mile Sur lacking in spirit, as it has a good presence of actors.
“If you compare both the songs, you will find that the proportion of film personalities is almost the same. Last time there were 26 artistes, of which 12 were from films. This time out of 60 personalities, we have 22 actors, while there are 13 musicians,” Mr. Surendranath said.
He added: “The inclusion of film personalities instils a message of national unity, as the film fraternity of the country has a strong presence in the minds of youth. When we were researching, Bollywood was on the top of our minds.”
Phir Mile Sur was shot in 60 days across 13 cities and included 30 days of post-production work. However, the non-inclusion of the Taj Mahal has also been noticed.
“The Taj Mahal is beautiful, but our concept was more youth oriented. We wanted the new song reflect the youth of the country so we experimented with new locations,” Mr. Surendranath said.