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Meghna Gulzar: Story needs to appeal to me, commercial possibilities are irrelevant

Filmmaker Meghna Gulzar waits for the right story to come her way, rather than hurrying into things. The reason she decided to make Raazi was the story that touched her instincts and made her want to adapt it on screen.

bollywood Updated: May 29, 2018 16:21 IST
Shreya Mukherjee
Shreya Mukherjee
Hindustan Times
Bollywood,Meghna Gulzar,Alia Bhatt and Vicky Kaushal
Filmmaker Meghna Gulza’s latest film Raazi has been garnering good response from the audience.(RAAJESSH KASHYAP/HT)

Filmmaker Meghna Gulzar is all about going by her instincts. A story, she says, needs to appeal to her enough, to go ahead and adapt it for the silver screen. She also prefers waiting for the right story to come her way rather than hurrying into things and that’s how she explains the success of her latest film, Raazi. “This is something that has been there since the beginning of my career. Not that I intended it to be like this, and also not like I thought that this would be my billboard or strategy. For me, choosing a story is an instinctive thing,” says Meghna, who goes on to explain how the process works for her.

Read| Alia Bhatt celebrates Raazi success with Gulzar, Meghna and Vicky Kaushal. See pics

“There has to be this grit in the story that [should] immediately connect with me. At that time, the genre becomes irrelevant, what its commercial possibilities are also not taken into consideration. How I will go about casting and choosing the crew, etc... happens later. First and foremost is if the story has jumped at me and if I’ve jumped at it, instinctively. Only then I know that I will be able to do a good job with it. And I believe that we make stories for the people within our society, so if the stories are from within the society, the connection is better,” says Meghna, who is happy with the way the audience has received her latest movie, Raazi starring actors Alia Bhatt and Vicky Kaushal.

Meghna earlier spoke about how Alia was her first and only choice for the film. Talking about it she says, “Going into screenplay, to writing a script... between a director and a writer, if you do all this with an actor in mind, then you have a disadvantage also. If an actor turns around and says that we don’t want to do this film, then you are in soup. You are creatively stuck with a face and a personality and then you won’t be able to do justice to the other person who will come and do the role eventually. So it’s not an advisable approach to take.”

Looking back, the 45-year-old director, who has made films such as Filhaal... (2002), Just Married (2007), Dus Kahaniyaan (2007) and Talvar (2015), says that she has always taken the risk. “Now that I think about it inevitably. In Filhaal, Tabu and Sushmita [Sen] were my only choice. In Talvar, I knew it could only be Irrfan sir and nobody else, and now Raazi. I feel fortunate as a filmmaker that my first creative instinct got fulfilled. I feel grateful that these actors agreed to be a part of these films,” maintains Meghna.

Interact with Shreya Mukherjee on Twitter @Shreya_MJ

First Published: May 29, 2018 16:20 IST