The International Biopic on the Last King of Punjab, Maharajah Duleep Singh, claims the 9th spot in the UK Box Office Charts
The international film biopic based on the poignant life story of the last King of Punjab, Maharajah Duleep Singh–also known as THE BLACK PRINCE–which released theatrically worldwide on July 21st, 2017, has attracted a phenomenal global response, debuting at number 9 in the UK Box charts.
THE BLACK PRINCE entered the coveted Top 10 UK Box Office chart over the weekend, joining other cinematic hits such as Dunkirk, Despicable Me 3, War for the Planet of the Apes and Spiderman – Homecoming. The film, which features a strong Indian narrative, successfully fended off competition from Bollywood’s Munna Michael, also outperforming the latter film in Australia, North America and New Zealand.
THE BLACK PRINCE has been appreciated by worldwide audiences, who for the first time witnessed the personal account of one of India’s greatest kings and his lifelong struggle to reclaim his rightful kingdom back from the British, the very people who had brought him to the UK and appropriated the famed Koh-I-Noor Diamond. The film also carefully captures Maharajah Duleep Singh’s fragile relationship with Queen Victoria, godmother to his children.
Produced by Brillstein Entertainment (Academy Award winning film 12 Years A Slave), THE BLACK PRINCE was written and directed by Hollywood filmmaker Kavi Raz and filmed widely across the UK and India. Acclaimed singer-poet Satinder Sartaaj marks his acting debut in THE BLACK PRINCE, essaying the character of Maharajah Duleep Singh with eloquence. He is joined by an esteemed cast of acting stalwarts including Jason Flemyng (Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Snatch, X-MEN: FIRST CLASS) as Dr. Login, English guardian for the Maharajah; English stage and screen actress Amanda Root (The Iron Lady), who boldly portrays the role of Queen Victoria; and veteran actress Shabana Azmi (City of Joy) as Rani Jindan, the exiled King’s mother. The film also features Keith Duffy, David Essex OBE, Canadian actor Rup Magon and Sophie Stevens in supporting roles.
The Black Prince is now in general release in cinemas internationally.
The Maharajah Duleep Singh was placed on the throne at the age of five–only to be robbed of his destiny by a bloody act of treason at the hands of trusted courtiers.
He was then taken from his mother and exiled to England by the British at the age of fifteen. While in England, he was introduced to Queen Victoria, who took an immediate liking to him and dubbed him ‘The Black Prince.’ He was indoctrinated into Christianity and baptized, his life forever changed.
Meeting his mother again after thirteen years, the Maharajah awakens to the realities of his former life in Punjab. He then begins the arduous journey to regain all that was lost, and re-embrace the Sikh faith of his birth.
Maharajah Duleep Singh is torn between two cultures and faces constant dilemmas as a result. His profound connection to Queen Victoria will be the most impactful relationship in the film, the Queen representing the English culture he was ultimately drawn into. Duleep’s lifelong journey to regain his identity, dignity, and kingdom takes him across the world but his struggle is not met with success, as he never wins the chance to set foot again in his own land of Punjab.
Maharajah Duleep Singh died in 1893 at the age of 55 years, a lonely pauper in a hotel in Paris. Though a reconverted Sikh, his final wishes were denied even in death as he was buried as a Christian in the English countryside. Efforts by his people to take his remains to the land he once ruled to be cremated as per Sikh rites continue today. Duleep’s devotion and faith inspired following generations to fight until India finally regained its independence from Britain in 1947.