Shatranj ke khilari is based on munshi premchand's short story. It showcases the life of people in india in the 19th century. It places emphasis on indian rebellion of 1857. It focuses on events surrounding the british annexation of the indian state of awadh. The movie also shows the politics around the colonial expansion by the british east india company. Wazed ali shah played by amjad khan is the ruler of one of the last independent kingdoms of india.