RR: For me, acting is about feeding your co-actors. You are never acting for yourself, you are acting for your co-actors. I am really glad that all these actors in the film were on the same mental level that we all were on, and we were all feeding off each other.
Herry Tangri was a really good actor, particularly in that drunk scene. When I came on the set, I said, I’ll be drunk, so he thought he too should get drunk. So he called for some alcohol and he also got drunk. And then we were both just feeding off each other. We were listening to each other and not trying to prove who was a better actor. I think that’s how a bad scene or a bad film shapes up.
Even Shruti (Haasan) was amazing, she was always there… very cooperative, very professional and, of course, looking gorgeous onscreen. Even Ranjeetji… I was so surprised… I was working with him for the first time and he is such a natural actor, I was so impressed with his performance. Gulshanji (Grover) is back after long time and doing something he has never done before. I think every actor has contributed something to the film, to make it what it is right now.
BOI: With so many actors, a new director, shooting in a city other than Mumbai, weather conditions… as a producer, was it difficult to handle everything?
AVM: Yes, but we are lucky that we are three producers, not one. We also had the support of people who are in the production and everybody else. Having my brother (Anshul Mohan) around made it easier for me as I was sure he would take care of most of the things and I could move on to things which were more important. Since there was a new director, you want to make sure you give him everything he wants so that doesn’t become a reason it doesn’t work out. He gets a great DoP with a great camera; he gets a great acting buffet so that he can pick and choose what he wants, when he wants and how he utilises it. So you want to be involved with all of those aspects and you want him to be happy.
BOI: And the numbers, expectations…
AVM: I am more than happy with whatever the film does because, right now, I think it has already given us a lot. Since we are new filmmakers, a new director, new production house, no one really wants to back a project like this but we are still trying to do something in our own little way.
I am the worst person to talk to about the numbers of this film but I genuinely believe that whatever it does… what it’s doing for us right now is much more than we expected… the love we are getting from people… We released that first song Tera ho ke rahoon… and it already has 128-129 official cover versions, it’s amazing.
Because people have told me thing like ye thodi na koi dekhega, chalo aage chal, kuchh aur karlo… but we believed in it from our hearts. So I really don’t care how much business the film does, right now the love we are getting is more than enough to keep us going so that we make more films like this.
BOI: As an actor, where would you place this film in your graph?
RR: I think it is a first of its kind, something I have not done before. But I have always loved that, I love challenges, I love pushing myself as an actor, and I don’t want to be in my comfort zone… I can’t work like that. So when this film came to me, I thought this was something new… but, as I said before, it’s my first so-called commercial film and it’s a love story. But it’s not a brainless comedy. It has its sensibilities, and is fairly relatable. So I feel pretty proud and that I am not really taking a risk and trying something really stupid. I am really proud of this film.
Talking about numbers… I believe every film has its own destiny and we can’t predict numbers. All you can do is be honest and that’s what we discussed when we started making the film. Everything else is fate. We can promote it, everybody promotes their film. We can try to make a good film and we will be more than happy with the numbers it brings in.
AVM: I want to add that this movie is a proper romantic comedy. I don’t think that genre exists in India any more. It has great music, good romance, funny dialogue and funny situations. Over time, we have mixed it all and murdered this genre… it’s not even my favourite genre to watch as an individual but it’s a genre that really needs to be developed. It’s a great genre because it gives you the opportunity to do all these things and, still, we don’t do it. We either make really silly romantic films or we make really random musical films. We don’t use a mix. So we wanted to do that, we wanted to balance it.
BOI: What’s next for your production house?
AVM: We have already made a
Hindi-Marathi film called Haadsa, which is out and it’s going to be screened in some festival around. We are going to start Captain Nawab with Emraan Hashmi, which one of my partners Tony D’Souza will direct some time this year. And there are other films in our pipeline which we want to execute as soon as we can.
BOI: Will we ever see you turn director?
AVM: Not now. I want to make sure that I turn into a producer first, a proper one… producer in terms of more movies to be produced. We have made this film the way we wanted to and, right now, my focus is to make more films like this, films that have something to say and that are also economically sound. Of course, we don’t want to be foolish with your money.
AVM: No, and my favourite genre is the thriller genre. I can watch a thriller movie every day of the week or any story that has a connect. When my director came to me the first time, he didn’t even have a story because it was his own personal story that had happened to his sister and he was the kid in the film. When he told me the story, it connected instantly because when I was a kid, in Mumbai with my brother, we were picked up in class and told, ‘Inki behne
nahi hai sab inko rakhi bandho (Laughs). This happened with me so there was an instant connection.
RR: (Cuts in) Ye to pure India me I think bahot logo ke saath hua hai and that’s the reason I think our film is
BOI: Apart from this, what’s next for you?
RR: After this, Bareilly Ki Barfi is releasing on 21st July. Then there is Newton that I am actually waiting for a long time.