Jolly Good Show

Arshad Warsi,who received rave reviews in Jolly LLB,on how the film has put him in the solo hero league.

Written by Geety Sahgal | Published: April 26, 2013 6:18 am

It’s the last schedule of Dedh Ishqiya and Arshad Warsi is shooting long hours for the film in Mumbai’s far flung suburbs of Mira Road. He’s quite tickled by the way the sequel is shaping up,but it’s the shooting location that makes him turn up his nose. “I am at one of the dirtiest places. I feel Abhishek Chaubey goes around looking for the ugliest places and camps to shoot,” says the actor.

Warsi’s not complaining though,as he has a lot to smile about: his recent release Jolly LLB has done a business of nearly Rs 40 crore. It is now being said that the actor has strayed into the ‘solo hero’ bracket. In fact,Jolly is his third character (after Circuit in Munnabhai series and Babban in Ishqiya) that promises to outlive the film.

Has life changed after the success of Jolly LLB?

Like any other actor the desire to be appreciated is there,but I don’t feel any different. I can see the difference outside. Before Jolly… I was offered around eight multi-starrers and maybe one or two solo hero films. Now the ratio has changed. There are eight solo hero projects and one or two are multi-starrers. In fact,I told Subhash that things will now be different. It’s the third turning point of my life after my launch in Tere Mere Sapne and Munnabhai.

But is it true that you have hiked your price to five crore as reported?

No,I have not hiked my price. I was offered five and a half crore by a film-maker; I refused because I did not like the script. Maybe I was offered it because the script was not good.

What’s the exciting part of working in sequels? You have so many to your credit like Munnabhai,Golmaal,Ishqiya,Dhamaal.

The fact that with the first you come to know what works and what doesn’t. Like in Ishqiya,my character Babban’s rapport and relationship with Naseersaab (Naseeruddin Shah) was quite bizarre and mad and that’s what worked. Now that madness has been multiplied ten-times on the sequel. Babban is wilder and whackier and I am really enjoying doing this sequel. Even Circuit and Golmaal’s Madhav went up a notch higher in the sequel. In fact,I would love to play Jolly again and also my character in the forthcoming film Calling Mr Joe B Carvalho,who is a clean and funny family guy.

Are you worried about the future of Munnabhai franchise with Sanjay Dutt’s surrender next month?

The third series will happen. I don’t think Sanjay will be in jail for long. Everyone in the government knows that he is not a terrorist,and he was at the wrong place at the wrong time doing the wrong thing.

What next after Dedh Ishqiya?

I’ll be shooting for 68 Carat,written by Bhavesh Mandalia the co-writer of OMG: Oh My God,produced by Shyam Bajaj and directed by Girish Joshi. There’s a lot of realism to the film as it’s about the Aangadias,a community in Gujarat; they have a history of smuggling diamonds for the last 100 years. After that it’s Chambal Safari and then a thriller. Except for Joe B…,all my other films are serious stuff.

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