Deccan Chronicle

Paltan: 5 things you should know about the movie before watching it on Friday

Deccan Chronicle | DC Correspondent

Published on: September 6, 2018 | Updated on: September 6, 2018

The Ministry of Defence gave a standing ovation to JP Dutta's Paltan at the special screening held for them.

Paltan poster.

Paltan poster.

The Ministry of Defence recently gave a standing ovation to JP Dutta's Paltan at the special screening which was held for them. This was done since the plot revolves around the lives of some unknown heroes of the Indian army.

The film was highly appreciated by India's Ministry of Defence as the story reveals the true incidents from the lesser known battle of 1967 war at the Sikkim border.

JP Dutta is known for his films showcasing the army's on-field action in the most realistic way and for this he had been invited by the Ministry of Defence for the third time to make a film on the iconic event in the history of Indian Armed Forces.

With Paltan, JP Dutta is yet to reveal India's victory over China in 1967 which has not been talked about much.

JP Dutta who has earlier delivered war films showcasing Indo-Pak wars will now be presenting the lesser known battle between India and China that took place at Nathu La in 1967.

Apart from this, here are some real life incidents related to the movie which will make you watch it:

1. 1967 real war heroes helped J P Dutta to recreate the sets of Paltan

While talking about his encounter with the real-life soldiers, JP Dutta shared, "I met all the officers with the help of their respective battalions. The commanding officer of the battalion gives me the contact and then I started my research. Attar Singh came on our sets and he pointed out and zeroed in on the feature that was closest to Nathula".

He further added, "They live in Delhi and Jaipur respectively. I have met their families and interacted with them very closely".

JP Dutta who almost took a year for the research shared, "It took me close to a year. I started getting in touch with the heroes and their families and then I got my facts right to keep it as real as I possibly can for cinema".

2. Filmmaker JP Dutta roped in 300 army personnel for Paltan war scenes!

Recollecting the incident, JP Dutta shared, "The movie focuses on the action and existential angst that our soldiers faced during the war time. Who better than the real army officers themselves to showcase the true emotions? The ministry of defense was very supportive throughout the making and to shoot with real army men as part of our own crew helped us a lot. In no time, they all gelled with us and even helped the actors get into the skin of their characters. From training them to hold the real guns properly to aping army character traits, the real army personnel helped us and I am hugely grateful to them."

3. Arjun Rampal's personal trainer accompanied him to Ladakh during the shoot of Paltan

During the shoot of war sequence in the rocky terrain of Ladakh, fitness freak Arjun Rampal did not miss a single chance to indulge in his body regime. To keep himself fit everyday early morning the actor used to jog 4 km.

As Arjun Rampal's reel life character demanded rigorous workouts, every morning his fitness trainer did the same to the actor.

Along with his personal trainer, real-life soldiers at the border area gave Arjun Rampal and other actors’ intense military training to get into the skin of a soldier's character.

4. JP Dutta visited families of 1967 war soldiers before shooting Paltan

JP Dutta visited the families to understand their nuances and the difficulties they went through during the war period and post that.

He explained that trying to recreate those times today to shoot required a lot of research and meeting the families was a part of the research.

5. Real soldiers inspired JP Dutta's Paltan characters

The lead characters are all based on real-life soldiers who fought in 1967. Arjun Rampal plays the role of Col. Rai Singh, who was commanding a unit at the border outpost at Nathu La when the Chinese attacked.

Gurmeet Choudhary plays Captain Prithvi Singh Dagar who was detailed as the Officer in charge of a party ordered to strengthen the wire laying party opposite South shoulder at Nathula.

Harshwardhan Rane plays Major Harbhajan Singh who bayoneted three Chinese soldiers and then moved forward to silence their light machine gun, which was firing on the Indian troops, by throwing a hand grenade.

Sonu Sood, on his part, has stepped into the shoes of Major Bishan Singh, who comes from a traditional Rajput family with an Army background. In April/May 1967, Singh was responsible for taking over the front line to hold Nathu La Pass, and he carried out detailed reconnaissance with the necessary personnel. At about 5am one morning, Chinese troops opened fire on Indian soldiers exposed in the open, causing casualties.

The real Bishan Singh is all praises for the makers. "It felt great to watch the trailer of Paltan. JP Dutta has displayed his sharp intellect and skill of translating real-life battle sequences onto the screen beautifully. Such war movies inspire our nation’s youngsters to join the army and serve the nation. A lot of research has been done to bring to light the real facts, which marked a turning point in the history of the Indian Army after the debacle of 1962," he says.

Director JP Dutta added, "Most of my films are based on the army and the real-life clashes that took place. Paltan came to me as a story I didn’t know, and I wondered why it had not been told till now. It was difficult to dramatise and make it as masaledaar as possible, but I preferred to forego that and stay as true to events as possible."

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