Jaideep Ahlawat tells Bhakti Mehta, he is glad that his hard work has paid off and people feel Raazi is his finest work to date.
On The Brief
The brief was about the kind of film, the setting, the story, the characters. It spoke of Mir as an introvert as a result of the nature of his work. It also suggested that his introverted nature varied, depending on whom he was interacting with. It suggested that he gave a lot of importance to the nature of his relationships with different people, personal and professional.
On The Role
Preparing for a role is an interesting process. The script always serves as my Bible. I read it several times. The more you read it, the more nuances you discover. Here, I didn’t read just the part of Mir. You cannot read Mir in isolation. I would also talk to Meghna (Gulzar) and discuss the character with her. Not much is known about the man upon whom this character is based, and not much can be known unless you have interacted closely with the real Mir. So, you create a background for the character and imagine what he must have been like. And based on the script, you keep developing and adding layers to it.
On The Challenges
There were a couple of aspects that had to be tackled carefully when it came to Mir. For one, the character is 15 or 16 years older than I am. So, there was the physical aging. I put on some weight, worked on the look, the hairstyle and the clothes to look older. But, there is another aspect to age and that is how you think… how mature you are.
On The Director
Meghna Gulzar is a brilliant director. Before a painter starts painting, the final picture is already in their mind. The audience may look at the making of a painting as a continuous process, but for a painter the final product is already there. She had such a strong vision in her mind; she knew everything about the film before starting work on it. But, she revealed the film to us, layer by layer, whether it was the dialogue, the characters and their relationships, the look of the film. My look alone took two days to finalise. And it was the same for every other character, irrespective of the length of their role. She is a painter who has translated her vision onto celluloid.
On His Co-actors
My relationship with Vicky (Kaushal) goes back to our Gangs of Wasseypur days. I know his father, Shyam Kaushal, very well too. Of course, I met Alia (Bhatt) during this film. When I met her for the first time, I was surprised to see that she is very petite. I had never seen her in person before. She just looks so delicate and soft. But, she is a very tough person and works very hard.
On The Response
The response to the role and the film have been phenomenal. People have called it my finest work. I am happy that all the hard work has paid off. A role and a film like this can be emotionally exhausting and I am pleased that the results are so good. Karan Johar, Mahesh Bhattji, Rajkumar Hirani sir and so many others have praised the film. Dia Mirza was very emotional after watching the film. Everyone has really appreciated it.
My film with Kamal Haasan, Vishwaroopam 2, is ready for release. It should be out soon. Then, I have two films with Dibakar Banerjee. One is Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar and the other is part of the Love & Lust four-film series. I work with Manisha Koirala and Sanjay Kapoor in that film.