Actor Manoj Bajpai,who plays the lead in Anurag Kashyap’s “Gangs of Wasseypur”,says he had once thought of turning producer for Kashyap’s unreleased project “Paanch”.
After writing many path breaking scripts,Kashyap was supposed to make his debut as a director with “Paanch” in 2003 but the film ran into trouble with the Censor board and has not been released till date. It was loosely based on the 1976-77 Joshi-Abhyankar serial murders in Pune.
“That was the time when I was not just planning to act in Anurag’s ‘Paanch’ but also co-produce. He had written three career changing films for me – ‘Satya’,’Kaun’,’Shool’ and I knew this guy would go a long way. He narrated ‘Paanch’ to me and I loved it,” said Bajpai.
Some misunderstandings developed between the two after that and they did not work with each other for quite some time.
The 43-year-old actor,known for playing offbeat and unconventional roles,said he reunited with the filmmaker for “Gangs of Wasseypur” over an emotional encounter.
“Anurag called me one night and he told me about a script that he had for me. He wanted to narrate it a day or two later but I insisted to have the narration on the same night.
“I drove for Anurag’s place and he narrated ‘Gangs of Wasseypur’ to me. I gave my consent to the part,” he said. Manoj insisted the title of the film did not attract him to be a part of it,he signed it for Kashyap.
“I am not known for signing a film mainly by the attractiveness of a title. Anurag was one of the biggest reasons for me to have done the film. For all that matters,he could have titled the film anything and I would still have been a part of it,” he added.
“Gangs of Wasseypur” was screened at Cannes this year and Manoj,who is currently shooting for Prakash Jha’s “Chakravyuh”,said that he somehow managed his time to be a part of the international film festival.
“Soon after the screening at Cannes,I had to rush to the airport and catch the next flight to Mumbai. From there I took an immediate flight to Bhopal and then a five-hour road trip to Pachmarhi.
“The entire journey from India to Cannes and then back was covered in two days flat which can be back breaking for anyone. Still,it was worth it since I just wanted to be a part of this celebration.
“Prakash Jha too was really sweet to accommodate this trip,that too in the middle of his film’s shoot,” Bajpai said.
The two-part film boasts of a massive cast comprising Nawazuddin Siddiqui,Piyush Mishra,Reema Sen,Richa Chadda,Huma Qureshi,Yashpal Sharma,Raj Kumar Yadav and Tigmanshu Dhulia. The first part hit theatres on Friday.