comscore
Bollywood Hungama
Bollywood Entertainment at its best
Last Updated 17.06.2024 | 9:28 PM IST
  • LANGUAGE

  • FOLLOW US ON

  • FEEDBACK

10 Years of Holiday EXCLUSIVE: Vipul Shah says that Akshay Kumar was the natural fit for the role: “During intermission, when he tells his mates ‘Let’s play a game’, you wonder ‘What is he going to do?’ Audiences were shocked when they realized that he was going to kill 12 terrorists”

en Bollywood News 10 Years of Holiday EXCLUSIVE: Vipul Shah says that Akshay Kumar was the natural fit for the role: “During intermission, when he tells his mates ‘Let’s play a game’, you wonder ‘What is he going to do?’ Audiences were shocked when they realized that he was going to kill 12 terrorists”

Holiday – A Soldier Is Never Off Duty (2014) completed 10 years on June 6 and it’s a film that continues to be memorable due to Akshay Kumar’s performance, plot and a clapworthy intermission point. In recent times, the film has again become a talking point after the intense background score, played in the scenes of Freddy Daruwala, is being used in Instagram Reels. As the A R Murugadoss-starrer celebrates its 10th anniversary, producer Vipul Shah spoke exclusively with Bollywood Hungama about the film and shared fascinating trivia.

10 Years of Holiday EXCLUSIVE: Vipul Shah says that Akshay Kumar was the natural fit for the role: “During intermission, when he tells his mates ‘Let’s play a game’, you wonder ‘What is he going to do?’. Audiences were shocked when they realized that he was going to kill 12 terrorists”

10 Years of Holiday EXCLUSIVE: Vipul Shah says that Akshay Kumar was the natural fit for the role: “During intermission, when he tells his mates ‘Let’s play a game’, you wonder ‘What is he going to do?’ Audiences were shocked when they realized that he was going to kill 12 terrorists”

Holiday – A Soldier Is Never Off Duty is a remake of A R Murugadoss’ Thupakki (2012). How did you bag the remake rights?
The most interesting thing is that it was first supposed to be made as a Hindi film and later as a Tamil film. I had met A R Murugadoss. A gentleman named Mr Alif had introduced me to him when he was looking for a producer for his next Hindi film after Ghajini (2008). We discussed the idea and after developing the script, we narrated it to Akshay. However, the dates were not working out. When Akshay was free, Mr Murugadoss was making some film down South. When he got free with his film, Akshay’s dates were not available. Ultimately, the film was made in Tamil first and Holiday got the tag of a remake for a film which was supposed to be an original flick (laughs)!

It is said that the working title of the film was Pistol. Is that true?
No. We were toying with a lot of names, but we never agreed to any title. Holiday was not just an action film. It had a lot of thrills and intelligent moments. The idea was that the title should be neutral and should not have the tag of an action film. This is how we locked on the title Holiday – A Soldier Is Never Off Duty.

The poster, too, had the same thought – Akshay is in the army uniform but he’s also with Sonakshi Sinha. He’s holding not just a gun but also balloons! It was difficult for us to crack this idea. Rahul Nanda, however, brilliantly designed the posters for us.

10 Years of Holiday EXCLUSIVE: Vipul Shah says that Akshay Kumar was the natural fit for the role: “During intermission, when he tells his mates ‘Let’s play a game’, you wonder ‘What is he going to do?’. Audiences were shocked when they realized that he was going to kill 12 terrorists”

Pooja Bhatt had had some objections over you getting the title…
She had directed a film titled Holiday (2006). And mujhe genuinely nahin pata tha ki aisi koi film aayi hai. And for us, the title was always Holiday – A Soldier Is Never Off Duty and not just Holiday. We applied for the title from the Indian Motion Pictures Producers Association (IMPPA) and we got it. Later, she reacted sharply and said that what happened was wrong. And I agree with her. If tomorrow, somebody changes the title of my film as per his or her wishes, I’ll also be upset about it. Unfortunately, such are the laws and had I not got the letter of approval from the IMPPA, we would have then opted for another title. But since we got the title, we went ahead with it.

How was Govinda convinced for the entertaining cameo?
We wanted an actor who’d look convincing as someone that Akshay is scared of. Mr Murugadoss suggested Govinda’s name. I was not sure whether he’d be okay to do a role which was a cameo or an extended special appearance at the most. But he was gracious enough to immediately accept the part. We were very excited once he came on board. Akshay and he improvised a lot on the set.

The song ‘Palang Tod’ featuring Akshay Kumar, Govinda and Sonakshi Sinha was removed, and it was added to the print in the second week…
When we saw the film in the edit, we felt that the song is breaking the flow of the screenplay. But since it was a huge song involving Govinda sir, we also wanted the audience to see it. Hence, we decided to take it out and hopefully add it to the final cut once the film becomes a success. That’s how it got incorporated in the second week. It did have a huge impact on the second week’s collections. People went to see the film again once the news spread about the song being added. So, we got a repeat audience, thanks to the song which was fantastic.

Akshay Kumar was nominated for Filmfare Awards for Best Actor for this role, and he was very impressive…
This was a natural role for Akshay. His character, on the exterior, seems very chilled out. But there’s a very sharp and dedicated mind working at all times. For Akshay to slip from one avatar to another was very easy. Hence, he has come across so brilliantly in the film. You just can’t predict what his next move would be. During the intermission point, when he tells his mates ‘Let’s play a game’, you wonder ‘What is he going to do?’. Audiences were shocked when they knew his intention – that he was going to eliminate 12 terrorists at the same time. The reason you couldn’t predict was because you saw him as a fun-loving person. You go with the flow until you realize what his game was. And you believed his serious side as well in that split moment. The way he switched was terrific.

Holiday – A Soldier Is Never Off Duty is a rare film to be shot extensively on the roads of Mumbai. Was it a challenge to do so, especially with Akshay Kumar in the lead?
Yes, it was but Mr Murugadoss planned it meticulously. We had approximately sixteen hidden cameras. We had marked the whole path and we knew that we’d be able to film just one shot at a time and when we’d have to take Akshay away from the place. This is because the moment people would spot Akshay on a Bandra signal, it was going to become chaos. Thousands of people would assemble in no time to have his glimpse. And then you can’t shoot as Akshay’s character is supposed to be one of the many people in the crowd. Hence, we’d quickly film the shoot and then Akshay would sit in his car and speed away. We utilized the parking lot of Gaiety-Galaxy. Akshay used to wait there for his next shot. And he knew exactly from where he was supposed to walk and what he was supposed to do. We ensured that the shot was done in one take; or else, we would get a chance to do a retake only 2-3 hours later! Thankfully, we got all our takes in the first take itself.

In July 2014, Ashoke Pandit claimed that you had to pay Rs. 1 crore in bribes to shoot in Mumbai…
(Laughs) Nothing of this sort happened. I don’t know where this story has come from. No cop takes bribes to allow the shooting of a film. All this doesn’t happen now. A decade ago, the top cops had given us their numbers and instructed that if anybody didn’t give us permission or if we faced any issue, we were free to call them, and they would make sure that we don’t suffer. A single window for permission was also initiated. Also, Mumbai Police have also been kind to the film fraternity.

10 Years of Holiday EXCLUSIVE: Vipul Shah says that Akshay Kumar was the natural fit for the role: “During intermission, when he tells his mates ‘Let’s play a game’, you wonder ‘What is he going to do?’. Audiences were shocked when they realized that he was going to kill 12 terrorists”

Vidyut Jammwal played the villain in Thupakki. You have a close association with Vidyut. Was he ever considered for the role of the antagonist?
No, because by then, Force (2011) had been released, which had launched Vidyut as a villain. I wanted to project him as a hero and hence, we were planning Commando (2013) at the same time. Hence, I didn’t want him to play another villainous role. Also, after Force, we felt that it would be fun to have another very bright guy to be introduced as an antagonist. Freddy Daruwala fit the bill. He has an amazing presence and is a very good actor.

Is there a possibility of a sequel to Holiday – A Soldier Is Never Off Duty?
At that time, there was no such thought. But we knew that this character could have another mission. However, this new mission needs to be better than the one in part 1. Also, I believe that if the entire original team comes together, only then it makes sense. That’s not happened so far. But I would love to see the Holiday franchise being taken forward. It’s a perfect film to be turned into a franchise.

Also Read: 10 years of Holiday: Producer Vipul Amrutlal Shah says, “It is one of Akshay Kumar’s best performances”

More Pages: Holiday Box Office Collection , Holiday Movie Review


BOLLYWOOD NEWS - LIVE UPDATES

Catch us for latest Bollywood News, New Bollywood Movies update, Box office collection, New Movies Release , Bollywood News Hindi, Entertainment News, Bollywood Live News Today & Upcoming Movies 2024 and stay updated with latest hindi movies only on Bollywood Hungama.

Rate this article
Make favorite
Copyright © 2024 Hungama Digital Media Entertainment Pvt. Ltd. All Rights Reserved.
Forgot Password
Please provide your registered email address or username
  • OR
Write A Review
  • Click to rate on scale of 1-5
  • 5000 characters remaining

New notification