He always strives to tell untold stories. And, sure enough, director Anurag Kashyap now wants to make movies on Indian comic books, the Hindu holy city of Varanasi and a thriller in Bhojpuri.
"I want to make films that nobody has made. I want to make films without a reference point. I want to keep doing something before somebody else does it. I want to make realistic, good Bhojpuri films, not the usual stuff that is coming out. I want to make a thriller in Bhojpuri set in a village," Kashyap, whose No Smoking is releasing Friday, told IANS.
"I want to make films on Indian comic books like Chandamama and Champak. As a child I grew up on them. I have written a film in which you will find the references of the comic book characters.
"Also, I will make a film on Varanasi. I have a team of writers who are working on the script. We are going through all the literature on the city," said Kashyap who scripted films like Satya and Shool.
He also has no qualms about making a film on someone else's script. "My next film Dev D is written by Vikram Aditya Motwani. I am open to making films on other people's scripts as well."
Dev D is Kashyap's interpretation of Devdas that is being produced by UTV's new production arm, Spotboy.
<b1>Asked what the protagonist's character would be like in the film, he said: "In today's day and age everybody is in a hurry. People want everything fast. It is a day and age of instant gratification. I am placing my protagonist in a world where nobody wants to strive or slog for achieving something, and (I am) interpreting it to suit today's time.
"The character is the same (as in the original Devdas). That was also self-destructive and this is also self-destructive. But time, surroundings and mechanics have changed. My character talks on SMS, chats on sites. They have mobiles, still they have misunderstandings. It is a story everybody knows...how I'm doing it is important."
After struggling for more than seven years to release his controversial film Black Friday, Kashyap says he is now getting the right creative environment and financial support in the industry.
"I fought for it and earned it by getting my films banned so many times. And finally Black Friday was released. After eight years I made No Smoking. I waited so long because I wanted to make it in my way. Finally I found somebody who agreed to let me make it the way I wanted.
"It's much easier for me to get producers now. What has made it easier is that I have pulled off some impossible films like Black Friday and No Smoking. So they feel this man can do what he is saying."
How and when was the idea of No Smoking conceived?
"No Smoking has been brewing and stewing in my head. It started with the story that Ram Gopal Varma told me," said Kashyap, who broke up with his mentor Varma after Shool.
"We moved away because of lots of problems. While making
, we had creative differences. It was his film and he was looking at it differently. He is a headstrong man, I am a headstrong man and it became difficult for us to work together."
If Black Friday starred veterans like Pavan Varma and Kay Kay Menon, in No Smoking Kashyap has teamed up with commercial Bollywood star John Abraham.
"There is no difference between a commercial actor and an offbeat one. It is just the right casting. While shooting for No Smoking, I didn't have to tell John what to do. He just felt it and did it. Somehow the best performances always come in my films. I don't tell any actor to do anything."
In the film, John plays a hateful character who makes everybody's life miserable.
"He plays K. He is an arrogant, selfish and conceited fellow. He is disrespectful to his wife, colleagues, and doesn't care about his friends. He is a man one will never want to meet. But bit by bit he is stripped of his arrogance and selfishness. He is brought down to earth with a thud by Paresh Rawal, who plays Baba Bengali Sealdahwale."
Kashyap is also doing an animation film called Hanuman Returns.
"Hanuman Returns is again my own interpretation. It is about Hanuman in the modern day world. I don't work from any reference point. I'm putting Hanuman in today's world where he will fight today's evil. After that I will complete Gulal and Devki."