Actor Neil Nitin Mukesh, who served as an assistant director at the beginning of his film career and enjoys writing, is putting the final touches to a script he has penned between films. "We’re in the process of locking the final draft and I’m in talks with Rohit Jugraj. I hope he can find the time to direct the film for me," says the actor who’s planning to launch his own banner next year.
Neil points out that his father, singer Nitin Mukesh, has already floated a company, Nitin Mukesh Pvt. Ltd., and following in his footsteps, he’d like to do the same. "I’d like to go with Mukesh Films Pvt. Ltd or Neil Nitin Mukesh Films Pvt Ltd.," he says, kicked about making his own movie.
"I’ve been working on a romance-revenge drama and I’d like to go with the title Paidaar. It means eternal, and for me love never dies."
Neil’s absorbed with his dream project and has also composed the music for it too. "I’ve even sung the songs," he smiles, admitting that the score is ready. So when does the film roll? "Not before 2012," sighs the actor, pointing out that he has a couple of commitments to wrap up first, such as his upcoming films Players and Shortcut Romeo.
He’s also in talks with two big directors for two other movies. "I’m itching to talk about them, but if I did, they’d turn up at my place with a guillotine. One would chop off my head and the other, my legs," he laughs. "Once I’m a little free, I’ll get cracking on Paidaar. It shouldn’t be long since the script and music is pretty much ready, as is the leading man…Me."
When Neil was prepping for his debut movie, Johnny Gaddaar (2007), director Sriram Raghavan prodded him to see Dev Anand’s evergreen hits, including Guide (1965) and Johny Mera Naam (1970).
"Sriram was a huge Dev saab fan. He wanted me to study the suave actor…his style and mannerisms, learn and rehearse some of his oft-repeated lines. Observe, but don’t ape, was the brief given to me. And I have to admit that having Dev saab as a muse without mimicking him helped me make an impact with my debut movie," admits the younger Johnny.
Earlier this year, Neil was invited to the premiere of Dev Anand’s Hum Dono and Chargesheet. "I wanted to but I couldn’t go because I was traveling for my shoots. Today, I wish I had been there. Dev saab was a charming man, we’ll miss him."