While Dibakar Banerjee may have roped Abhay Deol for two of his four films, the filmmaker insists that Abhay is not his muse. Banerjee insists that he cast the Punjabi Deol because he felt that Abhay was perfect for the role of a Tamil Brahmin, IAS officer named Krishnan.
He adds that Abhay being very cautious about the roles he plays further makes him a perfect fit for the character in Shanghai. Dibakar wanted an actor in his 30s or 40s, gracious with an underlying curiosity and zeal to be perfect. However, it is the same tough persona that makes him enticing to women.
Abhay and Dibakar had previously worked together in Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye! Abhay stars with Emraan Hashmi in Shanghai.