By Martin Graham
BOLLYWOOD landed in Fife this week as the cast and crew of the Indian movie ?Mausam? descended on RAF Leuchars near St Andrews for two days of filming.
After filming across Edinburgh?s New Town, Portobello Cemetery, New College and the former Crolla?s store in Newhaven, the entire operation shifted over the Forth to Fife to film key scenes at the RAF airbase.
The film tells the story of a young Indian man who leaves behind his life and girlfriend in Scotland to join the Indian airforce and fight a war with Pakistan.
The crew spent two days at the Leuchars airbase, and contrary to reports on some Bollywood gossip websites, main star Shahid Kapoor, 29, did not fly a Tornado jet.
Kapoor is a Bollywood superstar, known throughout the world for his all singing all dancing performances.
The film marks the directorial debut of his father Pankaj Kapoor, himself a major television and film star in India.
Flying Officer Merlin Andrew from RAF Leuchars said: ?”It?s a bit unusual to have a film crew on the base.
?”We?’ve had film crews in before, but it?s not a regular thing.
“?They were here on Tuesday and Wednesday, mostly out on the airfield.
“?They shot some scenes of the main star sitting in the cockpit of a jet, but he certainly didn?t fly it.
?”There were nearly 100 of them on the base.
?”They started working at 8am and finished at 7pm and they brought their own catering.
?They were supervised at all times during the filming, we wouldn?t allow people to just wander round the airbase as it?s a controlled area.
?Two Tornado F3 jets were used by the crew, they were filming alongside them and also filmed a sequence of jets taking off.
?Everyone on the base was interested to suss out what they were up to.
?The whole thing was organised through Air Command.?
The film crew were knocked back when they asked for permission to film a scene within the grounds of Portobello cemetery.
The graveyard has a Muslim section, and Edinburgh council initially refused them access.
After taking advice from Imam Sajaad at Edinburgh Central Mosque, who said that there would be no problem, the council gave the go ahead.
A spokesman for the council said: ?The council would not knowingly allow anything to take place in the cemetery which might be regarded as disrespectful to the Muslim faith, or indeed to any faith community.?