By Roshmila Bhattacharya www.hindustantimes.com
Dabanng may revolve around a corrupt cop in UP-Bihar who uses every loophole in the system to line his pockets, but the film also has a song picturised inside the Dubai Metro that has recently opened. “We were the first film unit to get blanket permission to shoot anywhere in the station. On the day of the shoot, the Metro was off-limits to the public, it was quite a novelty” informs actor-producer Arbaaz Khan.
The film that is gearing up for an Eid release, has 60 days of action choreographed by S Vijayan, the fight director of Wanted. Sohail Khan already has his own production company that released Main Aur Mrs Khanna last Diwali. Why did Arbaaz feel the need to launch his own banner? “Just because we are brothers doesn’t necessarily mean we have to agree on our choice of cinema. I want to make my own films,” he argues.
“But at the end of the day, both production houses are under the same umbrella. And both Salman and Sohail have been generous with their support and experience.”
Did Salman and dad Salim contribute to the script? “Abhinav (director Abhinav Kashyap) and I worked on the first draft for six months and then tweaked it right till the end to incorporate any valid suggestions, whether it came from dad, Salman or any one from the unit.”
Arbaaz has always maintained that no one but Salman could have pulled off this role and that will be apparent once the first promos are unveiled today. He has also asserted that the 20-something Sonakshi Sinha was the best choice for the female lead. But did he have to cast himself in the film too?
“I would have avoided it if I’d found a better actor,” he says. “I’m open to good acting offers but I’m no longer vying for roles. I’d rather concentrate on production, if something interesting comes up, even turn to direction.” He adds that even Salman is not going to be a permanent fixture in Arbaaz Khan Productions. “I want to make 8-10 more films and all of them can’t be with Salman,” he argues.
So who’s going to star in his nexrt production? “Hey, give me a break,” he laughs. “Let this film come, let me find another subject, lock a script, then we’ll talk about casting.”