Reality can be taxing at times. That’s exactly what Bejoy Nambiar and his Shaitan team realised when they tried to can a sequence in the busy by-lanes of Mohammad Ali Road. A scene in the film required lead actors Gulshan Devaiah, Neil Bhoopalam and Shiv Pandit to sport burqas and walk down the street.
But the trouble started when a few shocked locals raised objections to see men donning burqas (religious attire worn by Muslim women). The offended crowd were aghast to see it and, in fact, asked the team to stop shooting. “It was scary. The moment they started walking on the street, an elderly woman started shouting and abusing the boys. In fact, Shiv was completely taken aback. He immediately went to his vanity van. He felt the shoot wouldn’t be possible on the real location,” says a source.
And that’s when director Bejoy stepped in to explain that they were shooting for a film. After he described the shoot, the crowd calmed down initially, but raised objections again when they found out the movie was called Shaitan, as they feared it would have negative implications on their community.
“That day, the shoot had to be cancelled,” adds the source. The scene was shot over three schedules with strategically placed cameras in order to avoid any scuffles with the locals. Confirms Bejoy, “Yes, we had some major troubles while shooting at Mohammad Ali Road. We finally captured the scenes in a quiet manner successfully after three days of hectic schedules and hidden cameras.”