“Though Deepika is very important to the narrative, Finding Fanny is basically an out-and-out ensemble.”
Today’s numero uno actress Deepika Padukone heads the cast of Finding Fanny. Was she an automatic choice, especially after you had directed her in Cocktail?
Deepika’s character Angie is very important to the narrative, but once you watch Finding Fanny, you will realize that it’s an out-and-out ensemble film. After Cocktail, Deepika told me that she wanted to be a part of whatever I did next. I told her the story and she said she didn’t care about the length of her role; she just wanted to be a part of this story.
On the other hand, Arjun Kapoor has now become a star after 2 States. What went through your mind when you approached him for Finding Fanny?
I have known Arjun since the time I directed Being Cyrus — he wanted to shoot the making of the film. I am really impressed with the way he has grown as a person. When I saw him in Ishaqzaade, I realised that in spite of lacking in experience, he had a genuinely mature approach to his craft. I wanted a certain rawness and knew that Arjun would be able to empathise with his character.
While Cocktail was Imtiaz Ali’s idea that was executed by you, Finding Fanny is entirely yours. How much difference is there when it comes to execution?
In terms of execution, there is absolutely no difference. I jump into the deep end of any project that I am hired to make. On an emotional level, I initially have a deeper connect with my own material but that never will affect the effort I put into a job.
I remember you telling me once that even the DVD library owners wondered which genre to allocate to Being Cyrus. Is it the same with Finding Fanny too?
(Smiles) Finding Fanny will probably go up on the comedy shelf. But honestly it is quite dark on certain levels and it has a simple intensity. It really depends on how many layers of the ‘onion’ you want to peel!
- Joginder Tuteja, Bollywood News Service