Director Anurag Kashyap, whose forthcoming Dev D is a modern-day take on Sarat Chandra's novel Devdas, maintains that his film is not at all like Sudhir Mishra's Aur Devdas.
"Dev D is very different from Sudhir's Aur Devdas. The only similarity is that we both have drawn parallels from the classic novel. Otherwise, his film is based on politics and mine is on youth and their life," Kashyap told IANS over telephone from Mumbai.
"These are two different films with a completely diverse approach," he said.
Kashyap said that the original idea of making Dev D was suggested to him by actor Abhay Deol.
"Abhay narrated a story to me regarding a man in London and suggested making a modern take on Devdas. That thing hit me very hard. I got interested in the subject and hence Dev D was born.
"I then scripted the film on the basis of news headlines on the Gen X because I wanted to take the angle of today's youth in the film," the director explained.
Kashyap, who is known for directing films like Black Friday and No Smoking, entered Bollywood as the scriptwriter for Ram Gopal Varma's hit film Satya. He later went on to script for films like Kaun, Shool and Yuva.
Asked about the cast of Dev D, Kashyap said: "Abhay as the protagonist was an obvious choice, not only because he had given me the idea but also because he's a fantastic actor. He's an intelligent man and his body of work defines him completely. The kind of roles and films he has done proves his acting prowess."
But he admits that casting girls as Paro and Chandramukhi was quite a task. Two newcomers have been signed on for the two roles.
"I decided that Mahi Gill will be Paro when I saw her at a party. I later went on to see her work in some Punjabi films," said Kashyap.
"I had to delay the film because I wasn't able to find someone appropriate to do Chandramukhi's role. It is a complex and complicated character. My hunt ended when I auditioned Kalki who was one of the last girls to be auditioned," he added.
Kashyap, who is almost synonymous with dark, hitting films that revolve around characters with shades of grey, said he was averse to completely white portrayals.
"I don't like white characters at all because I feel there is no reality in them. I don't like making 'good boy' films since such people don't exist. The characters of my films always have grey shades to lend some realism to the film and I like it that way," the director said.
According to Kashyap, Dev D is an all-out commercial venture that would break his art house image.
"I have made this film with a completely commercial approach. The film has 15 songs including Punjabi and Rajasthani numbers. I can't get more close to commercial cinema," he said.
The film, which is scheduled to release in February, has been shot in Manali, Chandigarh, London and New Delhi.
"We shot at various places for the film. But I love shooting in Delhi. In fact, Paharganj (in central Delhi) plays a very important role in my film. I feel all these places have a lot of character," said Kashyap.