Principal photography hasbegun in New York and Calcutta on Fox Searchlight's drama The Namesake, which Mira Nair is directing from the novel of thesame name by the Pulitzer Prize winning author Jhumpa Lahiri.

The story follows the trialsand tribulations of a boy and his parents as they relocate from Calcutta to NewYork and try to assimilate into their new culture while also holding onto theirtreasured Eastern heritage.

Kal Penn, who starred in HaroldAnd Kumar Go To White Castle and isset to begin work on Superman Returns immediately after filming wraps on The Namesake, stars alongside Irfan Khan, Tabu, Jacinda Barrett,Zuleikha Robinson, Glenne Headley and Brooke Smith.

Nair's Vanity Fair producer Lydia Dean Pilcher is producing theproject, while Taka Ichise of Tokyo-based Entertainment Farm and RonnieScrewvala of Bombay-based UTV are serving as executive producers andfinanciers.

Claudia Lewis, executivevice president of production for Fox Searchlight, will oversee the project forthe studio.

Sooni Taraporevala, whopreviously collaborated with Nair on Mississippi Masala and Salaam Bombay!, adapted the screenplay.

"The Namesake encompasses in a deep humane way the tale ofmillions of us who have left one home for another, who have known what it meansto combine the old ways with the new world, who have left the shadow of ourparents to find ourselves for the first time," Nair said in a statement.