After Vicky Donor and Madras Café, director Shoojit Sircar has delivered yet another winner in Piku. And while it's got an emphatic thumbs up from both critics and the audience, Sircar says he's surprised by the response. Says he: "I actually didn’t expect this kind of huge response. You see, it is very different kind of film, and it felt really good when people accepted it the way we wanted. Such stories do look simple but are complex in their nature."
He laughs on the mention of foreign press’ good words about the film, "I was embarrassed. They had to say such good things about Piku."
But, wasn’t it difficult to work with such big stars? "Absolutely not. In fact, there is an advantage in working with established professionals that they help each other in evolving as the characters. They all were so genuine and helped each other to the core."
The director said he was overwhelmed by the praise showered by Irrfan and Deepika.
He adds: "I couldn’t thank them more because of the trust they showed in me. Once they were briefed about their roles, they left things to me."
Sircar agrees that Deepika Padukone has emerged as the latest feminist heroine in Bollywood. "I was always confident about her. Have you noticed how she has evolved in every type of films? Once the narration was over, everybody was in their character," he says.
Elated at the praise Irrfan showered on the film and his working style, Sircar says: "Irrfan has worked with good actors and directors, here and in Hollywood so when he says this it means a lot. Same goes with Deepika as well. We conducted many workshops, so nobody felt the pressure, and remained in the character."
Shoojit has earned praise for his earlier films such as Vicky Donor and Madras Cafe.
From Yahaan to Piku, the cinematography in your films keeps changing? "My brief to the camera team was simple: The audience shouldn’t feel the camera. The same was the case with the music and other sounds. Our attempt was to transport the viewers to the time and space of the story."
Unlike Annu Kapoor in Vicky Donor, Raghubir Yadav in Piku is very calm and composed. "(Laughs) Both the doctors are different. Dr Shrivastava (Played by Raghubir Yadav) in Piku is a calm and quiet man unlike Dr Chaddha (Annu Kapoor, Vicky Donor). Also, as per my perception, homeopathy practitioners spend more time with their patients."
Once again, Delhi forms the backdrop in your film. "I have lived in Delhi for many years, 17 years to be precise. A good part of it was spent in Chittaranjan Park also, so I was confident about the detailing. I have always said that everybody in Delhi is a character; you just need to look closely. Absolutely quirky people."
Interact with Rohit Vats at Twitter/ @nawabjha)