Abhinav Kashyap doesn’t come across as the quintessential debut making director. He doesn’t gush about his lead actor and producer, and though he looks a bit out of place, he exudes a quiet confidence, “I knew Dabangg would be a hit, but didn’t think it would be such a big hit,” he shrugs.
Abhinav Kashyap may be the current favourite in Bollywood now, with his film ‘Dabangg’
(Read Review) raking in the moolah at the box-office, but the journey to this stardom hasn’t been easy for this director. “Everybody loved my script; gave me good feedback and enthusiasm. But no one gave me the money,” he says in his typical matter-of-fact manner. “The problem with the corporate is that everything goes to their Board (Board of directors). They spend so much time wondering which star is signing the film, that months fly by and nothing happens. Things are much easier and faster once you have a star on board.”
So how did ‘Dabangg’ come along? After the struggle that seemed endless, ‘Dabangg’ materialized in almost no time! “I actually went to Arbaaz (Khan) for the role of Makhanchand. He wanted to hear the entire script, instead of just his character and asked me about the producer. When I told him that I hadn’t found a producer yet, he expressed his interest in producing the film. He gave me the signing amount on the second meeting itself and told me to dream big.”
“Arbaaz gave me the signing amount on our second meeting!”
Getting Salman Khan on board must have been a cinch then. “Arbaaz asked me about the lead actor but I hadn’t thought of anyone then. I was supposed to narrate the script to Salman the following day but Arbaaz couldn’t contain his excitement and narrated the story to Salman before me. At around 3 a.m. I received a message saying, ‘Done. Salman Khan.” Wow!
But Abhinav is no newbie to the world of glitz and glamour. He has done a lot of work in television before assisting Mani Ratnam in Yuva. Doesn’t that experience count? “No,” says Kashyap, “they think television directors are too small. But what they forget is that Anurag Basu, Imtiaz Ali, Anurag Kashyap, Tigmanshu Dhulia, Sriram Raghavan, Shivam Nair are all from television!”.
“We will work on the script. Then we’ll pitch it to Salman Khan”
There’s a lot of talk going on about a sequel to ‘Dabangg’ even though the movie has barely completed a few weeks at the theatres. Kashyap doesn’t deny it, “A sequel to ‘Dabangg’ is on the papers, but only talks are going on. The character of Chulbul Pandey is so famous that it’s logical to monetize this brand. Look at James Bond, Mad Max, Rambo. But we are not about to start it any time soon be because Salman has committed to doing some films. So there’s nothing for one year. We’ll just work on the script & ideate, then we’ll pitch it to Salman. If it’s good enough for him…”
Abhinav looks more intent on taking it easy for the time being. We wonder what it would be like if the movie didn’t have the super-hit songs Munni badnaam hui and Tere mast mast do nain…“There would have been some other good songs in their place. ‘Dabangg’ would have been a hit anyway!” With such confidence, we’re going to watch out for this talented director!
– By Koimoi.com Team