For the director of "Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro", one of the most brilliant social satires of Indian cinema, it comes as an embarrassing shock to be accused of muscling into Sujoy Ghosh's territory to direct the sequel to "Kahaani 2". He denies all the rumours.
"I think he did a brilliant job in 'Kahaani'. The way he recreated the bustle and tension of Kolkata was amazing. I don't think any other director could do justice to the 'Kahaani' brand," he added.
Made on a budget of Rs.8 crore, "Kahaani", centred around Vidya Balan's character, did a business of Rs.75 crore at the ticket window.
Explaining how he became embroiled in the unsavoury controversy, Shah said: "I went to producer Jayanti Gada with a woman-oriented subject. It was his idea to name it 'Kahaani 2' as he says the rights and title are with him. But I am not comfortable with this at all.
"Why should I claim any creative right over the 'Kahaani' franchise? It's Sujoy's baby. I'd like the producers to patch up with Sujoy and make 'Kahaani 2', 'Kahaani 3', etc with Sujoy. I'd like to be left out of this."
Describing his next film as political satire, Shah revealed that just like his first film, there is a dead body in this one.
While Shah clams up on more information on his new film, one learns it is titled "Masquerade", which he was supposed to make with Mallika Sherawat in the lead. But now the producers will cast a new girl in the lead.
Reacting to reports suggesting that Shah would take off the "Kahaani" legacy, Ghosh said: "No one can make 'Kahaani 2' without my consent. I will direct a sequel that would hopefully respect and honour the love that people showed to 'Kahaani'. I am here only to make films and not to defend my creation against poaching."
He is not worried about "Kahaani" being taken away.
"It's mine. Why should I react to some baseless report claiming someone else is making 'Kahaani 2'? The only thing that bothers me is that my mother in Kolkata reads such stuff and gets upset. She will get used to it."
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