Mahesh Bhatt to present play on Bush shoe-thrower

Dubai: Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt will produce and present a play loosely based on the book `The Last Salute to President Bush`, written by Iraqi journalist Muntadhar Al Zaidi, who shot to fame after throwing a shoe at the then US President George W Bush in Baghdad in 2008.

`The Last Salute` will be directed by Arvind Gaur and will premiere in Delhi in March and then travel to Mumbai and Dubai, a news channel report has said.

According to the report, Bhatt has chosen his new find Imran Zahid to play the role of Al Zaidi, who, organisers say, has already agreed to be a special guest in Delhi.

"He holds Mahatma Gandhi in high respect and follows his ideologies. So he wanted to also come to Rajghat (Gandhi’s memorial) and pay his tributes," a spokesperson of Zaidi told a channel.

Al Zaidi`s book, released in December last year, is a journal chronicling the moments leading up to the infamous press conference at which he hurled his shoe at Bush, calling him a dog.

He was arrested and convicted of assault, spent nine months in prison during which, he alleges, he was beaten and electrocuted for three days.

Actor Zahid will make his debut in Bhatt`s next production, `Chandu`, a film about the student leader Chandrashekar Prasad who was shot dead in 2007.