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What does The Rising mean, and when did you first read about Mangal Pandey?

It simply stands for the awakening of the Indians against British rule. Mangal symbolises the awakening of the Indian mind. From a loyal sepoy, he turns into a rebel.

I read about him at school. He was the one who first fought for Independence in 1857. His dream came true 90 years later when India became free. I think it is the first recorded evidence of Indians revolting against the British.

Every country has its own history it is proud of. Mangal Pandey is ours. But he's a legend because of folklore. There is not much recorded about him. Indian history has always been recorded orally.

Ketan [Mehta] researched extensively for the film; most scenes in the film have occurred. But was Mangal there? We don't know. There was a Captain Gordon. But did he meet Mangal? We don't know.

We have tried to put all these together and make the film. Our story is a fictional version of history.

The film will be made in English and Hindi. The English version will be called The Rising; the Hindi version will be called Mangal Pandey.

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