Rang De Basanti (RDB) writer Rensil D'Silva is set to direct his first feature film. The writer-turned-director teams up with the Omkara trio - Saif Ali Khan, Kareena Kapoor and Viveik Oberoi - and says he couldn't think of any other actors for his romantic thriller.
"Strangely, these were the names on my wish list. And they all said yes. I was lucky. I can't think of any other three actors for the parts," Rensel told IANS. Karan Johar is producing the film.<b1>
"It was Karan who had a germ of an idea. I developed it. He's given me a completely free hand. Sometimes, I am frightened by the trust he has placed in me. It's a romantic thriller in the truest sense. We don't have a title for it. We're looking desperately for a title."
Rensil's film is to be shot entirely in London.
"Every day, I get up and feel more excited. Unlike an ad, where you feel charged for only 10 days, here I've to remain focussed for more than a year. I'm enjoying the process of making the film from scratch. We start October 15 and wrap up in March 2009."
Isn't it too soon to direct a film?
"I've a dual life. I've been directing commercials for 10 years. A feature film was a natural progression. The preparation for an ad and a feature are the same. For me an idea even on a postage stamp is exciting. I didn't want to make a feature film until I was convinced about the subject... such a short life, might as well give it your best shot."<b2>
Innumerable eyebrows were raised by the fascist ending for RDB, which was directed by Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra. Any regrets?
"None at all. The only way to get an emotional response from the audience is to let the heroes die in the end. A journalist suggested that instead of getting killed the protagonists should've exposed the politicians in a sting operation. That was a good suggestion. But we wanted to jolt the people."
People have accused Rensel of copying from various sources for RDB.
"Someone said RDB was inspired by Jesus Of Montreal where the actor playing Jesus during the period of Lent suddenly imagines he's Jesus. I hadn't seen Jesus Of Montreal. RDB can always be traced to some Nigerian or Brazilian film. Personally, I'm not a DVD-copier at all. I'm very particular about being original. You can't copy from a DVD and then crib about piracy."
Initially Rensel was also scripting Mehra's second film Dilli 6.
"But I don't know how much of my writing will be retained. I would write it for a while. Then I bowed out and got caught up with other subjects."
Rensel has his fingers crossed for his directorial debut.
"I hope I'm turning a director for the right reasons, and not for the money."