By Ahana Bhattacharya
Mumbai, March 2 (IANS) Director Sekhar Suri’s action drama “Guns Of Banaras” is the last film to feature deceased Bollywood star Vinod Khanna. The late actor plays the protagonist’s father.
Asked about working with Khanna, filmmaker Suri told IANS: “Yes it is his last film. He was a legendary actor. He was a man of principles and a very disciplined person. Everybody on the set loved and respected him. But I don’t want to speak much about this. I don’t want to promote my film as Vinod Khanna ji’s last film.”
The film hit the theatres this past weekend. It is a Hindi remake of the critically acclaimed 2007 Tamil release “Polladhavan”, starring Dhanush. The Hindi remake has been set in Varanasi and scripted keeping in mind the city’s culture and heritage.
“We have shot the entire film in Varanasi. This is the first film that I have shot in the city and I loved the experience. I understood the culture and behaviourial patterns of the place and its heritage. The film has been scripted according.”
What urged him to remake the 2007 Tamil hit? “After watching the film, I felt a great story like this should not be confined to one language. Rather, it should cater to a larger audience. That’s why I felt the film should be made in Hindi because the reach is bigger,” explained the filmmaker.
He also spoke about the points where the Hindi remake differs from the original Tamil flick: “The Tamil film is a dark one and the presentation had to be dark. It’s not that the Hindi audience does not watch or appreciate dark films. Anurag Kashyap makes dark films and people love them. But not every dark film reaches the larger audience. ‘Polladhavan’ in Tamil was a hit among the masses though it was a dark film. I had to make certain changes in the Hindi version in some of the characters and storyline. I have placed the story on the banks of Banaras,” said the filmmaker, adding: “I have made it with a great sensibility even though it is a commercial film. It is a realistic story.”
Sekhar Suri is a popular name in Telugu cinema and is known for directing films such as “A Film By Aravind”, “Three” and “Aravind 2” among others. “Guns Of Banaras” is the director’s first Hindi film and he is very excited. Even though he works predominantly in Telugu cinema, Shekhar Suri revealed that he is comfortable speaking and writing Hindi.
“I can completely speak and write Hindi. My Hindi earlier was very bad but it has improved after marriage because my wife is North Indian,” smiled the director.
“Guns Of Banaras” hit theatres on February 28. The film stars Karann Nathh, South star Ganesh Venkatram and Nathalia Kaur.