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34 minutes agoAuthor: Kavita Rajput
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This year has been very difficult for Bollywood. Due to the release of many films due to the corona lockdown, the loss of crores and the death of Sushant Singh Rajput also gave a lifetime of grief. Bollywood’s well-known casting director and film director Mukesh Chhabra also describes the year 2020 as very volatile. He spoke openly to Dainik Bhaskar on a number of issues.
How did Prateik Gandhi’s name come to mind in the role of Harshad Mehta in ‘Scam 1992’? How difficult was the casting in this series?
I had seen the symbol work before. He played a small role in ‘Lovayatri’. Apart from this, I had also seen him in many Gujarati films. In such a situation, when Hansal Mehta asked for advice to cast someone for the role of Harshad Mehta, I suggested him the name of Prateik. Prateek froze him and thus he became Harshad Mehta. It is heartening to see that now they have come to know the child of the country. He is an excellent actor. I knew he was perfect for this role. This made it clear that the entire game is of talent and not of big and small stars.
How will you remember the year 2020?
This year has been very difficult for all of us. It was too much for me. Sushant’s death personally caused me a huge ambush and meanwhile had to release ‘Dil Bechara’. One thing to learn from this year was that we should never make the mistake of taking things lightly. Stop spreading negativity and treat everyone well, this is what this year taught.
What changed in the way Corona worked after the lockdown?
Many changes have come, although our work has not stopped but has increased. Now we are taking a lot of online auditions. During the epidemic many people auditioned and got work. Now a person from the smallest corners of the country can send us auditions and get work. First he had to come to Mumbai, wait for his turn for hours. A lot of money was also spent, but now it is not so. Apart from Mumbai-Delhi, I am also opening my offices in many other cities so that we can be successful in giving work to more and more people. Now many members of my team are also doing work from home living in other cities. We will continue to work online even further.
Earlier there was not much talk on the casting of the film, after you came this perception changed, now it is asked who did the casting? How do you see this change?
I am lucky that I managed to make this change. I will continue to do similar work in the future so that I can bring many excellent talented people in front of the audience.
‘Delhi Crime’ was made on a very sensitive subject, so how did you select Shefali Shah in the lead role while casting it?
The memory of us casting directors is very sharp. Many years ago I saw the work of Shefali ji, so when it came to the casting of Delhi Crime, his face automatically came in front of my eyes. We had to cast a face that looked absolutely real and Shefali ji was perfect for this.
You are the casting director as well as the director and actor, which films will be directed and acted next?
After ‘Dil Bechara’, at the moment I am not thinking about direction nor acting. There is too much casting work right now, so the focus is on it. My focus in 2021 will be that many talented people get a chance to appear on screen.