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Asif Kapadia’s docu-film on Maradona aims to show unknown facts

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New Delhi, Oct 3: Oscar and Grammy-winning filmmaker Asif Kapadia is hopeful that fans get to learn something new about Diego Maradona through his new documentary about the Argentinian footballing god.

Kapadia's new film "Diego Maradona" is set to release in India on October 11. The filmmaker, who won an Oscar for his 2015 effort "Amy" in the Best Documentary Feature category, hopes Maradona's overwhleming fan power in India will draw the audience to the theatres in this country.

"A lot of people here know who Diego Maradona is and know about football because quite lot of people are interested in football. There will be another set of audience who would know who I am and the films I have made, so I am hoping these people will come out too, and enjoy the film and also learn something (about Diego)," Kapadia told IANS.

Produced by James Gay-Rees and Paul Martin, "Diego Maradona" is constructed from over 500 hours of footage. Kapadia has pulled out hours of exclusive content from Maradona's personal archives, decade-old news reels and interviews with historians and journalists, to put together the 130-minute film. It was screened at 2019 Cannes Film Festival.

The film chronicles the story of Diego, coming from a small town, to working his way to the big league, and winning the World Cup for Argentina.

"They think they know who this guy is but there's a whole another story… Similar to 'Amy' in a way… the reality of a person is different from the persona that everyone thinks they know," Kapadia added.

"Diego Maradona", which charts the life of the controversial football superstar, is being brought to India by PVR Pictures. Sanjeev Kumar Bijli, joint-managing director, PVR Limited, hopes Diego's tale will resonate with the audience.

"I saw the film twice at Cannes and I loved it. The first time I saw it, I thought it was something I had to acquire. So, I ran to the production office and I acquired it. I think it is something that will resonate with a lot of people. It's not just about football. It is also about the rise and fall of a very iconic character," Bijli told IANS.

The film begins when the footballer, who was at the peak of his career, was transferred to the Italian club SSC Napoli for a then-world record fee in July 1984. The charismatic Maradona led Napoli to its first league title.

A British filmmaker of Indian origin, Kapadia bagged the Best Documentary Feature Oscar in 2016 for "Amy", based on the life of late singer Amy Winehouse. The documentary used archive footage to tell the story of the "Rehab" hitmaker's life and premature death. Amy died at the age of 27. The film also won a British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) honour.

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