Dark, demented, disgusting… Those are some the adjectives that have been attributed to your just-released film, Love Sex Aur Dhokha (LSD).
People have to have an opinion about any and every film and the opinion is always polarised, that’s a given. In the case of LSD, it was understandable that the reactions would be mixed because it’s such a radical film.
The Facebook Wall looks like a trip itself with 15 people saying it’s the best film they’ve seen, five others dismissing it as “bakwas” and another 10 telling these five to “grow up.” The film has sparked off a national debate, like the IPL.
‘LSD Has sparked off a national debate, like the IPL’ You’re trippin’ on IPL too?
No, I don’t watch IPL, I don’t watch cricket. Period. The point I’m trying to make is that anything that’s popular is bound to get reactions. And as long as people are watching the film and talking about it, it doesn’t bother me. The film was made on a decent budget and its already on its way to becoming a box office winner.
A particular trade magazine refused to review the film.Really?
I didn’t know that which just goes to show what difference it makes to me. Which magazine? Super Cinema, edited by Vikas Mohan.Wow! I think this guy had a problem with my last film too. (Laughs) May be he doesn’t like me.
‘People are okay with cleavage as long as it is covered up in double-standards’
You got similar reactions to Kya Kool Hain Hum too?
(Laughs) Yeah, one critic said that I should hide my face in shame. I responded to that saying I’d hide my face while running to the bank to encash my cheques.
Kya Kool Hain Hum and LSD are two different films though. The former was unabashedly satirical, this one is honest cinema. And I’m ashamed of neither.
Just because of the myopic thoughts of a minority, I’m not going to defend my films or dignify these accusations. Some people need to grow up. These same guys don’t object to double-meaning dialogue but cannot take straight talk… They are okay with cleavage as long as it is covered up in double-standards. They need to grow up.
Have you grown up?
(Laughs) I’m already a grown-up but now people are treating me as one.
The trade buzz is that people in the interiors don’t like the film.
Hey, we didn’t make a My Name Is Khan or 3 Idiots. Never mind if farmers in small towns are not watching LSD, as long as people in the cities love it, hate it, discuss it, I’m happy. My next film, Once Upon A Time In Mumbai, is a mass-centric film revolving around two iconic figures, a don and a Bollywood diva, and exposing the dark underbelly of crime in Mumbai. We’d want that film to connect with 80 per cent of India.
‘Dad said, “I can’t believe youngsters think like this”’
You were scared of screening LSD for your parents. Have they seen it yet?
Yeah, I was apprehensive but my brother (Tusshar) convinced me that our parnts needed to grow up. My mum (Shobha Kapoor) hasn’t seen it, she’s been too busy. But dad (Jeetendra) has and after the screening, he walked up to me and said, “I loved it.” I asked him if he was saying it because it’s my film and he retorted, “No, it is really interesting. I can’t believe youngsters think like this.” (Laughs) And I was like, “Yeah well, some youngsters, not all of them.”
When Dibakar came to me with the script, he bought footage taken for the net to explain hand-held digi-cam technique. Initially, I didn’t understand what he was saying but after he narrated his script, I realised it was a perfect marriage of story and technique.
What he proposed was path-breaking but I have always gone by instinct, even when I played serials Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi and Kasautii Zindagi Kay. And I’ll continue to follow my heart over my head.
But not all the films made under ALT will be so radical. The next one, Shor, features Sendil Ramamurthy, my brother Tusshar and an ensmble cast. Directed by Raj Nidimoru and Krishna DK (who earlier directed 99), it will be a crowd-puller for sure.
Then there’s Special 26, a siege film revolving around a heist. I’ve never read a script like this before.
Dirty lyrics and ‘soft’ censors
We had submitted the DVD in advance to the Censor Baord to avoid delays. When I heard the cuts that had been recommended, I couldn’t believe my ears. They were so sensible!
We were okay about the love-making scene of a bare-backed girl on top of a man being blurred. But editing out the caste references, we argued, would take away from the sub-plot since caste was the main issue there. But the censors felt that the dialogue would be misinterpreted.
Then there was the song that originally went, Tu nangi achchi lagti hai…. It was picturised on two drunk, misplaced pop icons from North India who were shooting a MMS clip.
Given the setting, the lyrics were justified. But eventually, we agreed to change the line to, Tu gandi achchi lagti hai…
Progressive films and regressive serials
The women in my serials come from small towns. I wouldn’t expect a woman living in South Mumbai to connect with the mind-set of someone living in Bhilai. But for me, she’s the boss. I will continue to make my serials that are my bread and butter, for a so-called ‘regressive’ audience and my films for a progressive one. I seem to have struck the perfect balance!
Bandit Queen connect
Dibakar (director Dibakar Banerji) had wanted Shekhar Kapoor to see LSD. He was sure that having made a film like Bandit Queen, he’d understand our film. After the reviews came out, a lot of industry people wanted to see it. I hosted a trade trial last Sunday. Mr Kapoor came for it and after the screening, messaged to say that he’d loved it. Now I’m trippin’ on LSD too.