Akash Bhatnagar

Actor Aamir Khan
Actor Aamir Khan

In 2007, Aamir Khan turned director with the emotional drama Taare Zameen Par (TZP) starring him alongside Darsheel Safary. The film shed light on the lesser-known condition of dyslexia and struck a chord with the audience, emerging a critical and commercial success. Last year, Khan announced that his next film titled Sitaare Zameen Par (SZP) and now, we have learnt that the film will centre around Down Syndrome.

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In TZP, Khan played a teacher who helps Safary’s character Ishaan Awasthi with his dyslexia. This time, the actor-filmmaker aims to bring a conversation around Down Syndrome. A source close to the development reveals, “Just like TZP, Aamir Khan wanted to bring focus on another condition that gets stigmatised in our society through Sitaare Zameen Par. That’s when he found a heartfelt story that sheds light on Down Syndrome and what people dealing with that go through. He wants to handle the subject very sensitively and create an impact that makes people suffering from the syndrome be treated as equals.”

The source added that other details about the film are under wraps for now. It is yet to be revealed if Khan would make his directorial comeback with the film or just produce it. Actor Genelia Deshmukh also stars in the film which is scheduled to release on Christmas this year.

Earlier, in an interview with News18, Khan had said, “With Sitaare Zameen Par, we are moving 10 steps ahead with the same theme. TZP was an emotional film. (But) This film (SZP) will make you laugh. That film made you cry, this one will entertain you. The theme is the same. That’s why we kept this name very thoughtfully. We all have flaws, we all have weaknesses, but we all also have something special, so we are taking forward this theme”. He added that in TZP, his character helped the special child Ishaan but “in SZP, nine boys, who have their own issues, help me. It’s the opposite.”

For the unversed, Down Syndrome is a genetic disorder caused when abnormal cell division results in extra genetic material from chromosome 21. It causes developmental and intellectual delays. Interestingly, the school that Khan’s character visited as a teacher in TZP was for kids with special needs like Down Syndrome. We reached out to Khan and his team for a comment but they were unavailable for the same.


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