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Looking at the FANTASTIC cast of Wasseypur-II

Last updated on: August 14, 2012 17:22 IST

Looking at the FANTASTIC cast of Wasseypur II


Sonil Dedhia

Just like the first part, Gangs of Wasseypur II has some brilliant performances from its supporting cast as well.

We decided to look at some of the lesser known faces on the big screen, who left a big impact in this film.

Aditya Kumar

Aditya Kumar played Perpendicular, a character who rolls razor blades in his mouth like a chewing gum.

The 26-year-old actor has earlier worked with Anurag Kashyap in a short film called Mumbai Cutting.

Audience Reaction

I have given everyone a reason to celebrate. I was born and brought up in Nalanda, Bihar -- the people in my village are calling me and congratulating me.

But now that Gangs Of Wasseypur is behind me, there is a fear whether I will get more work. I have always wanted to act. I learnt acting from (theatre guru) Barry John's institute. Manoj Bajpayee, who had also passed out from the same institute, has always inspired me.

My father, who has a car workshop, earlier had a small video parlour. That's where my fascination with movies started.

Working in Gangs Of Wasseypur

I had earlier worked with Anurag Kashyap in his short film called Mumbai Cutting. Before that, I was working as a spot boy in a television serial.

I was 19 years old when I did the film with him.

Around two years ago, Anurag called me and told me that he had a role for me of 14 year old boy (referring to Perpendicular's character). His only condition was that I had to learn to revolve a razor blade in the mouth. It took me around eight months to learn the trick.

My character is inspired from a real life character (Chotna Khan), who passed away five years ago. He too would lisp and would keep a razor blade in the mouth.

I had some issues with the lisp. A guy from my village would lisp, so I made a video of him and learnt to lisp by watching the video repeatedly. I also had to lose weight, as the character required it.

Anurag the director

Anurag Kashyap is 10 years ahead of the industry. The films that he makes are something magical. On the sets, he is very calm and composed. He has no attitude of being such a big director. He sits and eats food with the spot boy and listens to everybody's suggestions. 

I remember I was rehearsing for a chase sequence in the film and could not get it right. I was very nervous. Anurag came up to me and simply said: "I know you can do it" and it worked.

Watch the making of Perpendicular's character

Image: Aditya Kumar as Perpendicular in Gangs Of Wasseypur-II


Syed Zeishan Quadri

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Syed Zeishan Quadri plays Definite, Nawazuddin Siddique's step brother.

A Wasseypur local, Zeishan came to Mumbai to become an actor. He ended up writing the marathon five hour 20 minute film Gangs Of Wasseypur. He gave the script to Anurag with the condition that he be cast as Definite in the film.

Audience reaction

I have been continuously getting calls from friends and people in the film fraternity. I never thought I would be so famous! I have two stories that are almost ready. Once I finish them, I will start approaching filmmakers again.

Working in Gangs Of Wasseypur

I came to Mumbai in 2009 to become an actor. Acting is a passion. I tried my hand at acting and would give auditions but nothing was working out. At the same time, I would watch a lot of world cinema and get inspiration.

I narrated the film to a couple of directors before Anurag Kashyap agreed to make the film. I placed a condition that I would play the role of Definite.

I attended some acting workshops with Nawazuddin Siddiqui and other characters in the film.

Salman Khan's inspiration

I am a big fan of Salman Khan. I love his attitude. It's sad that he said that he would refrain from watching Gangs Of Wasseypur 2 as he feels there is a lot of explicit content in the film. 

In small towns like Wasseypur, people are obsessed with Bollywood. They blindly follow what Amitabh Bachchan, Salman Khan or Sanjay Dutt do. 

My character is based on a real life character. That person was a big fan of John Abraham. I had the liberty to tweak it a little and pay my tribute to Salman. I revisited all his films so that I could bring out the best characteristics while playing Definite. I would love to work with Salman Khan. 

Anurag the director

I don't have any words for Anurag. He is an institute in himself. He is just brilliant in what he does. He is very instinctive. He played a major role in developing the script. I am so proud that I have worked with him.

Image: Syed Zeishan Quadri as Definite in Gangs Of Wasseypur-II

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Rajkumar Yadav

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Rajkumar Yadav plays Shamshad Alam, a small-time businessman from Dhanbad who has his own reasons for bringing down Faisal Khan (Nawazudin Siddiqui).

Rajkumar Yadav has acted in films like Love Sex Dhoka, Ragini MMS and Shaitan. Yadav did theatre in Delhi and later joined Film and Television Institute of India in Pune. In 2008, he came to Mumbai in search of work and got his first film Love Sex aur Dhoka which released the next year.

Audience reaction

The film was a complete package. No one in my family has been related to films, so they are very excited to see me in the film.

Working in Gangs Of Wasseypur

I did not audition for the role. I had worked in Dibakar Banerjee's Love Sex Aur Dhoka and Anurag had seen my work. He had liked my performance. He approached me and offered me the role of Shamshad Khan.

I went to Wasseypur for around two weeks to get the nuances right for my character. 

I have been getting compliments for the chase sequence, which involved (writer) Zeeshan Qureshi's character Definite and me in it. In fact, the whole chase sequence was a coincidence and not a part of the original script. 

Anurag the director

Anurag as a director or person is just spectacular. He is just amazing to work with. He gives you respect and allows actors to improvise. He is more like a friend than a director. It was an experience to be directed by Anurag Kashyap.

Image: Rajkumar Yadav as Samshad Alam in Gangs Of Wasseypur-II

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Murari Kumar

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Murari Kumar plays Guddu, Sardar Khan's third son in Gangs Of Wasseypur.

Kumar is Anurag Kashyap's Man Friday. He has known Kashyap for more than 12 years now. Kumar has earlier worked in Gulaal, D Company and Ek Hasina Thi.

Audience reaction

I have never got such a response any time before. This is the proudest moment of my life, such a life-changing moment for me.

I come from a small town of Lakhanpur in Bihar. My parents have not seen the film and I don't know if they will even see it.

Let me tell you an incident: I had done a film called Ek Hasina Thi and the people of my village were curious to see me in the film. My family bought a VCR and in spite of no electricity, they showed the film to everyone with the help of a generator. But I hardly had 30 seconds of screen time.

People laughed at my parents and told them to call me back home.

Now, I am happy that I have proved everyone wrong.

Working in Gangs Of Wasseypur

The role of Guddu was very tough. As many as 2,000 people had auditioned for the role. I was always tempted to play the character but didn't have the guts to tell Anurag.

I went up to the casting director Mukesh Chabbra, who helped me give an audition. For a long time Anurag forgot about the audition. One day I went up to him and reminded him about it. He got upset then, and asked me not to interfere in his work. 

Finally, he saw the auditions and he was really happy with it.

Anurag the director

I have known Anurag for almost 16 years now. We did theatre together; I was learning under Makrand Deshpande. He was Anurag's guru too.

In 1996, I had done a play at Prithvi theatre, which Anurag had seen. After the play, he came up to me and told me that one day he would cast me in his film.

Anurag first cast me in Gulaal, where I had a good screen time. Since then I started working with him as his assistant.

Other directors always surround the lead actors as they feel the whole film is about them and they should be given importance. With Anurag Kashyap, every person working on the film is important. He is also ready to take inputs from the cast and crew.

Besides, he gives actors the freedom to improvise. Working in Anurag's films is like an experience in itself.

The perception of Anurag Kashyap in the minds of people is changing. People who abused his films earlier are now praising his work. (Anurag's mentor) Ram Gopal Varma started making unconventional films, and Anurag is continuing his legacy.

Image: Murari Kumar as Guddu in Gangs Of Wasseypur-II

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Yashpal Sharma

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Yashpal Sharma plays an 'item boy' in the film, who performs at weddings and funeral ceremonies. His character doesn't have a name nor does he have much screen time but he cannot pronounce 'r' and that adds a lot of quirkiness to his character.

Sharma, who hails from Haryana, has given some brilliant performances in films like Lagaan, Gangajaal and Ab Tak Chappan.

Audience reaction

I haven't seen the second film, as I had a minor eye operation but I am getting fabulous response. People have told me that my character stands out in the movie. I never thought my character would get so popular. He doesn't even have a name! And he's not related to anyone in the story.

I was a little sad when the first part released because I thought I had very little screen presence. But in the last five days, I have been flooded with calls and I realised that Anurag Kashyap did full justice to my character.

Shooting for the film

Anurag and I were on the same flight to Lucknow. He was on his way to Banaras to shoot the first schedule of Gangs Of Wasseypur and I was going for a play. I told him I was interested in working with him.

Anurag smiled to me and said, "Either I work with a star who is frustrated or I work with a newcomer who is very passionate."

I didn't fit in any of the categories but still insisted on him giving me a role. He then politely told me that the casting was over.

He made me listen to some songs and I was stunned by them. I don't think any film has such a brilliant soundtrack. As I was getting off the plane, he asked me whether I would be interested in playing an item boy. I instantly agreed.

Anurag the director

Anurag is versatile director. He can do anything. There is a Satyajit Ray and a Martin Scorsese hidden in him. He listens to his heart and makes films according to what he feels is right.

He is different from all the directors we have in our industry today.

Image: Yashpal Sharma in Gangs Of Wasseypur-II

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Pradipto Ray

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Prodipto Ray has a small but impactful Launda dance in the film.

A professor in the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, Ray makes his debut in a Launda dance in Gangs of Wasseypur. Ray has created storyboards for films like Rang De Basanti ,Heyy Babyy, Kambakht Ishq and Love, Wrinkle-Free. He hails from Kolkata.

Audience reaction

I am getting some amazing response to my Launda dance in the movie. My friends and family have been very supportive. Richa Chaddha came up to me and said, "You dance better than any woman; I wish I could have been a part of the song."

I am already getting some offers from a big production house with a huge star cast but can't reveal much about it now.

Helen's inspiration

As a child, I grew up watching Helen's numbers. She is my biggest inspiration. Helen always projected herself as a very strong woman. Most of the time she played a vamp and her character would bring that twist in the tale.

As a kid, I would watch every Hindi film that featured Helen and would try and copy her.

Whenever I had a chance I would dress up like her. As I grew up in a middle class family I didn't have anything that was shimmery or glittering so I would just use a gamcha. Also to dress like Helen, I didn't need much cloth.

Shooting for the film

I met Anurag Kashyap at a friend's wedding in Chandigarh in December 2009. I knew that he was making Gangs Of Wasseypur then.

As I started dancing in the wedding, I became the centre of attention. I met Anurag over lunch and he agreed to cast me in a Launda number only on the condition that I should lose 10 kilos.

I was already working as art director on the recently released film, Love, Wrinkle-Free. Luckily the GOW shooting was postponed and I got time to finish my other commitments.

In December 2010, I started my workout. I just had two months to prepare for the role as my shoot was scheduled in February 2011. I had even choreographed and practised the dance moves in Mumbai.

I have got a lot of friends back home in Kolkata who are Launda dancers and they would go to Uttar Pradesh and Bihar to perform in weddings. These people had really scary stories of being abused and molested during the performance. Anurag and I were clear that we did not want to show it and kept it a dance number which was authentic and at the same time, entertaining.

Anurag the director

Anurag is a brilliant director. He understands what is going on in the actor's minds and adjusts his shots and scenes accordingly. I have always been a big fan of his films. The shooting was held in Banaras and I was very nervous.

But Anurag made me feel very comfortable.

Electric Piya was a challenging song as it was shot in one go.

Image: Pradipto Ray in Gangs Of Wasseypur-II

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