So how much did Siddharth Anand stretch himself in directing Anjaana Anjaani. To be precise, ten months. Anand was happy to wait for almost a year to get Ranbir’s dates. Next up was Priyanka Chopra. Mid way into our conversation, Anand moves on to Aditya Chopra and Sajid Nadiadwala. “Anjaana Anjaani is my best work, but I don’t claim that. People who’ve seen the film say so” Sid quotes. Well, it’s time we wake up to see just that. Part 2 of this exclusive chat continues where Devansh Patel finds out more about the director’s Anjaana Anjaani to his next directorial venture which is set in rural India. It’s been some time since Anand has made a film that seemed daring and ambitious. The annual arrival of the new Siddharth Anand movie once prompted queues around the block at Cineworld cinemas in the UK and excited eager anticipation amongst the Indians living. Anjaana Anjaani is sure to bring back all the above.
The stretched effect
Anjaana Anjaani is a far more mature work. It is my best work and I don’t claim that. People who’ve seen the film say that. It’s a lot more involved and a lot more evolved. It’s a little complicated. Anjaana Anjaani doesn’t have trappings of a commercial pot boiler. It’s a little different. I’ve stretched this love story. But I know that it is for the fact, thoroughly entertaining. I’ve managed to entertain my audiences and also surprise them.
For the past ten years, I’ve worked with Aditya Chopra. I’ve directed three films in the last four years. The comfort of having someone like Aditya Chopra is huge. It’s an umbrella and a cushion. He is like a blanket. I trust his judgement to the core. While making my films, he’d be there to sort out my misconceptions. I would even trust and debate with him (laughs). Our relationship was like a bounce board. It was back and forth.
This time, I wanted to see how I was capable of going wrong or right with Anjaana Anjaani. Sajid Nadiadwala was gracious enough to let me make this film the way I wanted to make it. There were no interruptions from his side. He never told me what to add and what not to. He spent a lot of money on whatever I wanted. If I wanted to write something different to take the film to another level, I didn’t ask anybody. I went with my judgement.
Shooting in India
I shot Salaam Namaste in Melbourne. At that point in time, it was a city never explored by Bollywood filmmakers. For Ta Ra Rum Pum, we shot in North Carolina and for Bachna Ae Haseeno, we shot in Switzerland, Rome, Italy. Anjaana Anjaani we shot in San Francisco and Las Vegas. A lot of my friends tell me that I shot in locations where I go for my vacations (laughs). I have written a script which is based in rural India, not Mumbai or Delhi. Once Anjaana Anjaani is released, I intend to take it further.
Ranbir is a fuller actor. I hope to tie him down for my next film too, I wish (laughs). He is a natural actor and that’s what makes him a perfect actor. He doesn’t think before doing anything. That’s why his Wake up Sid is different from an Ajab Prem … and Ajab Prem is different from a Raajneeti. He doesn’t have any method. It’s the best part to watch him act.
It was great that she agreed to do Anjaana Anjaani. I was a bit sceptical because of her available dates. Now a day, dates are difficult to get. But we got Priyanka on board and the ride was smooth from thereon. I kept waiting for Ranbir Kapoor since February 2009 for his dates too and got his in November 2009. I think a film is forever and if you have patience, that same film will be talked about for a decade.