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The Rediff Interview
/ Sanjay Leela Bhansali
Hrithik, Bhansali and a non-existent film
Subhash K Jha |
April 13, 2005
Recently, there were rumours Sanjay Leela Bhansali had approached Hrithik Roshan for his next film, Alipur. Hrithik, also apparently approached by Ashutosh Gowariker for his next, Akbar-Jodha, was reportedly having a hard time choosing which project he should say yes to.
But when rediff.com asked Bhansali for details, the director said, "Ali who? Where's that? I've never been there. Nor do I wish to. Suddenly, Alipur has become the hottest tourist spot in India. This is a figment of someone's imagination. I'm so glad to see such generosity on the part of journalists who're setting up projects for me. They might as well decide the cast and direct the film."
And in conversation with Subhash K Jha,the Black director seemed to be intrigued by the geographical location of the project that never was! Excerpts:
Hrithik is supposed to be making up his mind upon over Alipur?
Like I said, there's no film called Alipur. I haven't discussed any project called Alipur with Hrithik or any other actor. He's probably as ignorant about the whereabouts of Alipore as I am. How can I cast him when I haven't decided what I want to make next? After Black, I have to be very careful about where I want to take my cinema. I'm confident that the audience is willing to walk that extra mile with my creative vision.
It seems Ashutosh Gowariker wants to sign Hrithik for Akbar-Jodha.
I've no idea what Ashutosh is making. But if he's doing a film with Hrithik, I'm looking forward to seeing it. Why try to create a controversy by pitching two directors against each other when we're no way in competition? We respect each other as filmmakers. Trying to pitch us against one another over the issue of an actor choosing one of us is creating unnnecessary controversy.
So no Alipur?
Absolutely not! Why are people making up projects for me when the fact is I'm in the process of deciding what I want to do next. Planting fabricated projects may get you a sensational headline but Alipur is an illusion. There's no script written by Patrick Biswas or anyone else, no discussion with Hrithik or Rani Mukerji. Right now, I'm chilling out. It'll take me two-three months before I make up my mind. I need to rest and rejuvenate myself.
Is Bajirao Mastani still on the anvil?
It's very much my dream project, and I'll make it in the future. For now, I'm as uncertain about my next film as the geographical location of Alipur. Do you know where it is?