My films have happened because of Amitabh Bachchan: R Balki
Right from his first film, Cheeni Kum (2007), R Balki created a name for himself, and soon enough, followed it up with another acclaimed film, Paa (2009). No surprise then, that Balki’s next, Shamitabh, with Amitabh Bachchan and Dhanush, is much anticipated. The director talks about his movie and more.entertainment Updated: Jan 17, 2015 14:42 IST
While he has an envious body of work as an ad film-maker, it didn’t take long for R Balki to establish himself as a director in the Hindi film industry too. Right from his first film, Cheeni Kum (2007), the director created a name for himself, and soon enough, followed it up with another acclaimed film, Paa (2009). No surprise then, that Balki’s next, Shamitabh, with Amitabh Bachchan and Dhanush, is much anticipated. The director talks about his movie and more.
Why does Amitabh Bachchan feature in all your films?
When you make a film, if you don’t think of the greatest actor in the country for it, who else will you think about? All my films have happened because of Amitabh Bachchan. Like in the case of Shamitabh, I was going to his house on his 69th birthday, and I didn’t have a gift for him as I didn’t know what to gift him. I was stuck in a jam for two hours, and I thought that all I can give him is an idea, which he might not have at this point in time, and I whispered it in his ear. When you work with an actor of such calibre, you need to do justice to his talent. So, whenever I approach him with a story, the attempt is do something that hasn’t been done before. Also, there has to be novelty to what we are doing. I feel, as a director, I need to give a new reason to the audience to come and see my film every time.
Abhishek Bachchan is the co-producer of the film. Did you ever think of casting him in the film in place of Dhanush?
Since I was also the co-producer on the film, Abhishek left a lot of things to me. As far as casting him is concerned, when you see the film, you will realise why I didn’t. The role (played by Dhanush) wouldn’t have worked with anyone else. It is not about a certain person I want to work with, but about the character in the film.
Is Dhanush better with Hindi now?
Didn’t he dub Raanjhanaa (2013) all by himself? Dhanush is a Tamilian, he can learn anything. If you tell him that learn Mandarin and that will work for the film, he will speak it better than a Chinese guy. He comes across as someone who knows nothing, but he knows everything.
Did you have to convince Rekha a lot to be part of the film?
There is a specific role in the film and Rekha ma’am was just perfect for it. She is the sweetest woman on earth. The moment I called her for the film, she happily agreed. It was just half a day’s work; I wish I could work with her longer.