Shahid Kapoor, who has reteamed with Vishal Bhardwaj for 'Haider', an adaptation of William Shakespeare's tragedy 'Hamlet', says he felt insecure and uncertain as an actor while playing the character.
Shahid Kapoor. PIc/Satyajit Desai
'Haider' completes Bhardwaj's trilogy of Shakespearean tragedies after he successfully adapted 'Macbeth' in 'Maqbool' and Othello' in 'Omkara'. Shahid and Bhardwaj worked together in 2009 film 'Kaminey'. "Vishal sir gave me so far the best role of my life in 'Kaminey'.
It is amazing to work with him again. It is a rare opportunity and very few actors get to play Hamlet. "This is one role that makes you feel very inadequate as an actor. When I was on the sets, I used to run to everybody for assurance.
I would ask Vishal sir and the cast members 'Do you think I got it right'," Shahid told reporters during the trailor launch of the film, which releases on October 2. Bhardwaj, on his part said he never thought that the long gestating project would see the light of the day. The director said he chose Kashmir as a backdrop because the family drama of 'Hamlet' fit into the situation. "Once I imagined this film as an espionage thriller but Gulzarji scolded me, saying 'What are you doing to Hamlet?'.
During that time I was reading Basharat Peer's 'Curfewed Night' and it made a huge impact on me. 'Hamlet' is a family drama and the backdrop of Kashmir suited my story," Bhardwaj said. The director, who has made beautiful children films like 'Makdee' and 'The Blue Umbrella', is equally famous for his gangster dramas but Bhardwaj does not believe that he is attracted to dark stories. "I am attracted to human conflict. Negative and positive are within us. These conflicts make stories.
'Hamlet' was written four hundred years ago and its beauty is that you can adapt the story in any situation or culture because it is about basic human conflict," he said.
Shahid, who was last seen in 'R... Rajkumar', says for once it was exciting to play a character which was not black and white. "Very few filmmakers give you the opportunity to actors which demands from them more than what they are used to giving. Vishal has been that filmmaker. When he calls for you a project, you know that it is not something regular or run-of-the-mill," Shahid said.
The film also stars Tabu, Kay Kay Menon and Irrfan in pivotal roles and is produced by Bhardwaj and Siddharth Roy Kapur. Tabu and Irrfan have reteamed with Bhardwaj after 'Maqbool'. "Kay Kay Menon is one actor that I wanted to work for the longest time. I am happy that I am finally working with him," Bhardwaj said.