Yesterday, the news broke that filmmaker Rohit Shetty would collaborate with Ranveer Singh for the second time after Simmba for an adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Comedy Of Errors titled Cirkus. The play, one of Shakespeare’s most farcical, revolves around two sets of identical twins who are separated at birth and then find themselves in a series of wild misadventures based on their mistaken identities. If that sounds right up Indian cinema’s alley, it is. The text has been adapted no less than eight times in various languages since 1963. Let’s break down every adaptation:
Bhranti Bilas (1963)
This Bengali-language comedy, starring Uttam Kumar, was based on a play of the same name by Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar.
Do Dooni Char (1968)
A loose remake of Bhranti Bilas, Debu Sen’s film starred Kishore Kumar and Asit Kumar Sen as a banker-assistant duo who are mistaken for a merchant and his servant in the small town they’re visiting.
A remake of Do Dooni Char, Gulzar’s film starring Sanjeev Kumar and Deven Verma sticks to the template for the most part but ups the melodrama by having the same family adopt both sets of identical twins and then separate, leaving each parent with one twin of each pair.
Ulta Palta (1997)
This Kannada-language film, directed by NS Shankar, plays around with the casting by having Ramesh Aravind play not only one set of twins, but also their father.
Ulta Palta (1998)
Relangi Narasimha Rao’s Telugu comedy, starring Rajendra Prasad and Srikanya, is a remake of the Kannada film.
Aamait Asal Eemait Kusal (2012)
This modern-day Tulu-language adaptation of Shakespeare’s play, starring Naveen D Padil, marked director Ranjan Raaghu Shetty’s debut.
Double Di Trouble (2014)
This Punjabi-language Dharmendra-starrer, directed by Smeep Kang, tells the story of father-son duo who travel abroad and discover their dopplegangers.
Local Kung Fu 2
Kenny Basumatary’s action-packed Assamese-language take on Shakespeare’s play is a sequel to his 2013 film Local Kung Fu. It revolves around a set of twins who know martial arts, and another who don’t.