'Creative differences exist'

As Marjaavaan is released, there is excitement and nervousness. Producer Madhu Bhojwani talks to Anita Britto about what goes in selecting a script, actors and their upcoming line-ups

Congratulations, Emmay Entertainment completed eight years. How does it feel, to reach this far? What are your thoughts on it?

Thank you! Well, we are very happy. But to be honest, I don't think either of us whether it's Nihkil, Monisha or myself, you know, wake up every day or every other day and says that, oh my god, we've done so much. We've come so far. We are so busy, working and trying to put projects together and get our directors to work and you know, coming back every day, thinking and believing it's a new day, and there's so much more to achieve. And I don't think we are even conscious of the fact that we've hit this milestone. But we're very happy that you know, the industry has given us such a lovely platform and the audience has appreciated all the work that we're putting out there.

Do you still have that pressure with every film and the other challenges that come with it?

Of course we do. And I don't think it's different for any other producer, because I'm sure if you speak to producers who are much more senior than us and who've been in the industry for as long as they have, for every producer, I think, a film when it comes out, there is you know, there are butterflies in your stomach. Because nobody knows what the outcome is going to be. And you always hope for the best you put in your best work and not compromise in, you know, in the input journey. And then you hope that you know the outcome is favorable for all.

Speaking about Marjaavaan, how did the script come to you or you were the one who approached Milap Zaveri?

So Milap has been working on the script for right over three to four years, and it's something that I think was very close to his heart. And he brought the script to us. Then I think Monisha loved it. That's where it started so the rest is history be me. Nikhil and I heard the script, and we loved it.

Then we brought him (Milap) on board as a writer, and we got the screenplay and the script from him. Over a period of time, as the script was developed, we were toying with the idea of certain, you know, names, who's going to direct it and what should we do? But post Satymev Jayte, the most logical thing was to have Milap direct the film because the script and the idea was close to his heart. It had action, it has a very strong love story and a lot of it, we felt he would be the best guy to deliver on-screen.

What about the scripts? How are the scripts decided? Are there any creative differences?

I think creative differences are bound to exist because everybody has an opinion. However, at Emmay the three of us are quite clear in one thing, which is, that when we greenlight scripts or we develop concepts, all three of us must necessarily be excited by the idea. Because if we're not, then we know that at some point further down the line, there will probably be a difference of opinion. Of course, sometimes we still go ahead and develop ideas because, you know, it may end up becoming something better than perhaps it wasn't at the idea stage. But largely when we take films to the floors, and you know, green light them for production, we're very clear that we need to all be concurrent in, confirming that, yes, this is a film that we want to make.

Also you just had an announcement last evening about Bell Bottom, how did that come into the picture?

We are really excited about it and it's being directed by Ranjeet Tiwari, who directed Lucknow Central for us and that's released back in 2017. Ranjeet was quite clear that you know, the next film that he makes is an idea or concept that, you know, he should have a complete conviction. He wanted to take his time with picking the right idea. And about a year ago is when he brought this subject to us and we loved it and we said, okay, we must develop this. So we brought writers on board and developed it into a full-fledged script, screenplay with dialogue, etc. Then, of course, the next logical step was to see you know, who can we take this too and we already have an established relationship with Akshay. We've delivered a successful film like Airlift and Nikhil and Akshay have worked together, even before Emmay Entertainment was set up. So there is a very high level of mutual respect and trust. So when we took the script to Akshay, he loved it, that was very exciting for us. We were really thrilled about it. Then, of course, Vashu Bhagnani came on board and then all the pieces fell into place and led to the announcement.

There is also Indu Ki Jawani, let's speak on that?

Indoo Ki Jawani is a comic story. It's about this girl from a small town and we've spoken a lot about the idea and it's in the public domain. The title role is being played by Kiara. And in fact, we are our unit is currently in Lucknow shooting for this film, and we're hoping to wrap over the next couple of days. BOI

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