Posted: 18 September 2013 at 7:06am | IP Logged
Phata Poster Nikla Hero - An action comedy of errors
An aspiring actor turns into a fake cop, triggering a series of humourous twists and turns in Phata Poster Nikhla Hero. Parag Maniar explores...
Shahid Kapoor on Vishwas Rao
Vishwas Rao actually wants to be an actor, but circumstances compel him to become a fake cop. And unlike other cops are who are used to violence, Rao has a tough time coming to terms with it. Since he's aspiring to become an actor, he can't afford any injury, especially on the face, lest his acting career comes to an end before it even takes off. The humour makes the sequence funny. Even the action has several funny moments in them, without any blood and gore, the kind that we see in Jackie Chan films.
Ileana D'Cruz on Kaajal
Kajal is a social worker who takes her job very seriously. She ends up at police stations very often to lodge complaints. The officers are quite fed up of her and nickname her 'Complaint Kaajal'. The people who she complains about are politicians and those with clout, and the police officers do not want to get into it. She drags Vishwas Rao into one of her complaints, not knowing his true identity. I have always found (director) Rajkumar Santoshi's humour to be very different. This film has his trademark style, making it worth a watch. And with the number of expressions that I have made, my face has become elastic just like a rubber band! But it was challenging playing this role considering that I am quite goofy in real life too.
Character sketch Savitri (Padmini Kolhapure)
Savitri is Vishwas' mother, an autorickshaw driver by profession. She is so honest that if she jumps a traffic signal, she will walk over to the cops and pay the fine. Savitri wants Vishwas to become a police officer and shares a strong emotional bond with him.
ACP Khare (Darshan Jariwala)
He is an entertaining and honest cop. Darshan says he has added elements of humour to his character. "Santoshi and I have had a long-standing relationship. While writing the script, they could not think of anybody but me in this role. I am happy to be part of the team once again," he says.
Gundappa Das (Saurabh Shukla)
Gundappa Das is a gangster, albeit a funny one. Though he is evil, his demeanour appears funny. He is quite like the villain in Austin Powers.
Jogi (Sanjay Mishra)
He is a struggling writer who talks big, but delivers little. He often boasts about how the storyline of successful films like 'Ghajini' and 'Dabangg' were with him, but he let go off them. Jogi stays in a guest house where he entertains strugglers and promises to give them a chance in Bollywood. He even takes up the challenge of grooming Vishwas and making him a hero.
Dhating Naach with Nargis
Music composer Pritam roped in Amitabh Bhattacharya to pen the lyrics for 'Dhating Naach', a total Mumbaiya track sung by Nakash Aziz and Neha Kakkad. The video features Shahid and Nargis Fakhri " this is her first Bollywood item number " on an extravagant set. The actors rehearsed their steps for over a week and the shoot was completed in three days. Says Nargis, "I love to dance and when this opportunity came my way, I jumped at it. Also, Shahid is one of the best dancers in the industry, so how could I not do it?"
Producer's note - Ramesh Taurani
After 'The Legend Of Bhagat Singh' and 'Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani', this is my third film with Raj ji. It is a complete masala-entertainer, an old school comedy that has all the ingredients of an out-and-out commercial venture meant for a family audience. The content of the film is not offensive and there is no vulgarity either. After watching it, the audience will leave the theatre with a smile. As for the lead cast, we were the first to launch Shahid Kapoor and so we have a longstanding equation with him. He is a thorough professional, extremely hardworking and disciplined and I am sure the audience will love him. Ileana D'cruz does something different from what she did in her first film. She has had fun working and that reflects onscreen.
Director's cut - Rajkumar Santoshi
I wanted actors who are admired not just by the youth, but are also popular with family audiences. So, I decided on Shahid Kapoor and Ileana D'Cruz, more so because they have not been exploited in the comedy space. As a director, I ensured that the performances are in sync with the script and tone of the film. The entire team has delivered and done a great job on the film, which is a wholesome entertainer. Also, it has always been a pleasure teaming up with Ramesh ji as he gets involved in the project and at the same time gives his directors creative space.
Behind the scenes
Believe it or not, Rajkumar Santoshi actually wondered if Shahid was the right choice to play the lead in the film and if he would be able to carry off the comic role. To make matters worse, a nervous Shahid was given a three-page dialogue scene that the director told him to complete in a single take, after enacting it himself.
The 'Agal Bagal' track was shot at a construction site. On the day of filming, the temperature was 45 degrees and to add to his woes, Shahid had to wear a heavy costume donned by construction workers. Says he, "By the end of it, I had two kilos as a result of sweating it out in that heat. u Shahid was to ride a horse for a scene. But his busy schedule didn't leave him much time to learn horse-riding. A day before the scene was to be shot, Santoshi taught the actor horse riding.
Santoshi's prank took Shahid by surprise one day. The director had consumed a cola fizz made from a tablet given by the actor's spot boy and pretended to fall seriously ill. Santoshi complained of a severe headache and made queries as to who had given him that fizz pill. Shahid's spot boy did the disappearing act, leaving Shahid worried. It was only when Shahid became nervous that Santoshi burst out laughing. Shahid, of course, was too shell-shocked to react as this was not expected from the director who usually maintains a serious demeanor on the sets.
Since Shahid plays a small-time guy, utmost care was taken while shooting songs in South Africa, to ensure it didn't look very lavish. The unit saw to it that nothing local ended up making an appearance on the screen for the sake of authenticity.
Shahid's most difficult co-star was a dog! Whenever there was a scene involving it, the entire unit, including Shahid, would wait till the animal was ready for it.
Since the action director, Kanal Kannan, is a Tamilian, Shahid grasped quite a few words of the language by the end of the shoot. In the beginning, he'd be clueless seeing Santoshi and Kannan discuss the scene in Tamil. "Koi mujhe bhi kuch bataao," he'd often ask the director.
In one scene, actor Sanjay Mishra would keep forgetting the name Manglu and say Mangal or Sheenu.
Shahid calls Ileana a 'housewife'
Ileana prefers to spend time cooking, cleaning and grocery-shopping when she is not shooting. So much so, that her co-star Shahid has started calling her a housewife.
Says the actress, "Whenever Shahid would ask me what I would do after going home, I would reply " 'I have to go and buy bhaji and cook'. So, he gave me this nickname."
Ileana adds that it serves two purposes. "I live on my own, so I have to be careful. These days, you can't trust anybody. Even employing domestic help is risky. Also, it is good to take care of your home. I love cooking and cleaning; it is therapeutic and a nice way to stay grounded. People don't recognise me, so I can shop like any girl," says she.
What does she cook? "My favourite is a recipe I found online, but I have improvised it " it's called Peri Peri Roast Chicken. I also make fish cakes and other Continental stuff. I will probably start cooking Indian dishes too," she says.
" Seema Sinha