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Casablanca to be remade.

Plans for what might very well be the most heinous crime in the history of Cinema have been announced.

Acclaimed Indian director Rajeev Nath is planning to make an Indian version of Casablanca.

Obviously changes must be made, with WWII being replaced with the current ethnic conflict in Siri Lanka and Rick’s Café will now be an South India restaurant.

In this version, our hero Rick (Humphrey Bogart in the original) is a former Indian government diplomat that now owns a restaurant. His lover Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman) and her husband (Paul Henreid) as will now be Tamil separatists, fighting against the Siri Lanka government.

Suresh Gopi will take Bogie’s place as Rick and Mandira Bedi will play Ilsa.

While I am sure Nath is very talented, and his intentions are good, Casablanca is one of those films that should be left alone. Still, it could be worse; this could be a shot for shot remake ala Van Sant’s Psycho, or Joel Schumacher could be onboard, adding his own special brand of cinematic toxin to the classic.

Filming will start in September with plans for a 2008 release.