To celebrate India’s 77th Independence Day on Tuesday, actor-director Kamal Haasan released a remastered version of his 2000 historical crime-drama Hey Ram for free on YouTube.
Kamal announced the news on his social media handle and, as he has always stated, called the film “an ode to Bapu (Mahatma Gandhi).“
Hey Ram, a fictional take on history, narrated the story of Saket Ram (Kamal), who after the brutal killing of his wife Aparna (Rani Mukerji), joins a gang to execute Mahatma Gandhi for advocating peace with Muslims, only to have a change of heart after meeting Bapu. The film depicted India’s partition and the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi by Nathuram Godse.
Notably, Kamal has time and again stated that the film was his first apology to Gandhi as he was a bitter critic of him initially.
The film, also produced by Kamal under his Raaj Kamal Films International banner, featured an ensemble cast of Rani Mukerji, Hema Malini, Abbas, Girish Karnad, Vasundhara Das, and Nasseruddin Shah among others. Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan featured in an extended cameo, a role for which he asked no remuneration.
With music by Ilaiyaraaja, Hey Ram was simultaneously made in Tamil and Hindi. Watch the remastered version of Hey Ram for free here: