Did the box-office collection of Nautanki Saala in the first week match upto your expectations?
Nautanki Saala was made on a budget of ’10 crore. For a relatively small budget film,I am happy with the collections and the response that the film has received from the audience. Adhering to a strict schedule we had finished the film in 35 days. We have already sold the satellite rights to Star TV and the film is also doing well in the overseas market.
To what factors do you attribute Nautanki… doing well at multiplexes,while Commando which released on the same day,doing good business at single screens?
The films performance varied in different sectors. While at some places the film did well,there was a huge gap in what the film earned at singles and multiplexes. The prime reason for its average performance was that the film was released in only 900 single screen theatres whereas Commando was released in 1500 t h e a t r e s . Also our target audience was very different one which liked to see intelligent comedy and not farce that goes in the name of comedy. The film performed well in urban centers like Mumbai,Pune,Delhi,Chennai etc.
While the film has attempted something new,according to trade reports,it has failed to meet expectations.
We have not attempted slapstick comedy in our film. I wanted to give a different tone to the genre and I am glad that I have been able to experiment with this film. This is the best film of my career so far. I am happy with the kind of response that I have received from the audience,despite receiving flak from the critics.
How different is it to work on a small budget film?
Film-making is a team effort. There are several scenes in the film,like the one with Ayushmaan Khurrana standing on the sofa trying to pacify his girlfriend,and a picture frame of Robert De Niro pointing a gun at his head is shown,was created on the spur of the moment. Art director Saini S Johray was present when one of the cameraman captured the picture in the frame. The sound of gun shots were added later in post production. We have concentrated a lot on the detailing in terms of sound,design,visuals to improve the quality of a small budget film. In fact,we have used some remixed old numbers to enhance the entertainment,like So gaya..yeh jahan for a road trip scene in the film.
Any particular reason why you have directed just four films Kuch Naa Kaho,Bluffmaster,Dum Maaro Dum and Nautanki Saala?
There is no particular reason. In the present scenario,with interesting films being made and the audience receptive to different kinds of cinema,I find myself getting excited about making an effort to tackle diverse subjects. At present,I am going through a few stories which have caught my attention.