There were disagreements about the details - one source said Punjab; another said Rajasthan - but the Indian media was in agreement that Kathryn Bigelow, the Oscar-winning director of The Hurt Locker, is to film parts of her new movie about the hunt for Osama bin Laden in India rather than Pakistan.

Security concerns have reportedly led the director's team to decide that filming inside Pakistan is unsafe. Instead, they will recreate the al Qaeda leader's Abbottabad compound - where he spent five years living near a military academy - in northern India.

Bigelow is understood to have cast Kyle Chandler, Jessica Chastain, Joel Edgerton, Mark Strong and Edgar Ramirez in her thriller about the US Navy Seals who killed Bin Laden. It is believed to be titled Zero Dark Thirty and due for release in December.

In an interview that Chastain, star of The Help and The Debt, gave this week to a Hollywood news website, JustJared, she said she had just returned from working on the Bin Laden film in Jordan and was suffering from jet lag.


"After the Oscars, I go to India to shoot more of the exteriors for the film. The script is so incredible but they're keeping it really quiet. Even my manager and agents haven't read it."

In India, the Mail Today newspaper quoted an anonymous film industry source in Mumbai as saying: "Bigelow wanted a backdrop that resembles Abbottabad. Since shooting in Pakistan is out of question, she seems to have settled on India.

"Most probably, filming will be done in parts of Rajasthan in March. The team did a recce of western Punjab and Rajasthan over several weeks. They seem to prefer Rajasthan."

- Independent