On the lines of KHOSLA KA GHOSLA and A WEDNESDAY, comes a film directed by Pankaj Advani, called SANKAT CITY. Having an acting school of mine and getting opportunities to work outside India I get to be in touch with today's generation. In that sense I will never feel outdated. SANKAT CITY is my belief in the modern day Indian cinema and that how money plays very minimum role in the germ of a thought that enters into the mind of a director or writer.
I clearly remember the first time I met Pankaj. He had come to visit me on the set of a film I was shooting, around one and half years ago. We sat and had a short conversation in my make-up van. He handed me the script. I asked him, which role he had me in mind for. He told me, 'Will talk to you after you read the script.'
CHECK OUT : SANKAT CITY- Movie Preview
A week later I read the script and it blew my mind. I called the producers to let them know of my reaction. Ten minutes later, Pankaj called me. I congratulated him. He wanted to meet me. I called him over to the set again. This time he mentioned the character he had me in mind for. But by then I'd fallen in love with the character of Faujdaar, a funny, twisted-n-vicious loan shark, who has a kink for South Indian starlets, also a big devotee of a godman referred to as Maharaj ji.
We argued. Pankaj was insistent that I do the other character. I had no alternative but to bulldoze him into giving me the part. Initially he resisted. I could see that he was upset with me. He called me again in a day's time and said, ''I'm going purely by my instincts, will you do Faujdaar's role.''
We met again and talked about the character. He requested if I could shave my skull for the role. I readily agreed. He wanted a very rustic accent for my character. I suggested that I do a Himachali accent, like my character in HUM. And then started the shooting. From the very first shot, I was sure that the crew knew their job, though I did get a feeling that they were being a little guarded while interacting with me. But that didn't last long. We were shooting a scene in a moving car. Me and Rahul Dev were sitting on the back seat. There was no space for the sound recordist. I offered to operate the nagra (on my lap which was out of frame). The crew immediately warmed up to me.
CHECK OUT : A black comedy showing flipside of Mumbai
One thing I must mention about the film is, the long one-shot scenes, sometimes going upto 3 minutes. They were difficult to do, because it involved a lot of movements, positions, lines, moods and actors. But we managed to pull it off quite well. I am not the lead protagonist of the film like A WEDNESDAY and KHOSLA KA GHOSLA, but I feel the need to promote this kind of cinema which is passionate, earthy, relevant and original. I enjoyed working in the film. And I enjoyed watching the film. If you've loved certain films of mine, you're going to love this. Watch it for the emergence of a new director.