'Ranveer and Anushka never brought their baggage to work'

Band Baaja Baaraat director Maneesh Sharma tells us why Aditya Chopra laughed at his casting choice and what it was to direct rumoured couple Anushka and Ranveer in Ladies VS Ricky Bahl

Ladies VS Ricky Bahl has a very stylised commercial look.
Ladies � is about a conman and the idea was to have fun with that, so it is not as realistic as Band Baaja Baaraat, which was rooted in familiar galis. But Ladies ... is also high on content. Stylistically, this film is fairly textured: you see Lucknow, Delhi, Mumbai and Goa. With Band Baaja Baaraat one tried to do something exciting, refreshing and fun within the romcom space; this time we have done the same with the con genre.

Anushka Sharma and Ranveer Singh in Ladies vs Ricky Bahl

Is directing the second film as difficult as the first?
Before Band Baaja Baaraat was released, Adi (producer Aditya Chopra) had given me the script for Ladies VS Ricky Bahl. The entire team, including Ranveer and Anushka was excited, and we quickly got going. Every film comes with its own struggle. BBB came from within me but here, the big difference, in an exciting way, was that this story is not mine. Adi's Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge is one reason why I decided to become a filmmaker when I was 15. Now I am directing a film written by Adi. My life has come a full circle.

Does Ranveer Singh play a Casanova in Ladies...?
The word 'Casanova' is being used and people are already predicting it to be like a John Tucker Must Die or a Bachna �Ae Haseeno kind of film, which it isn't. He is not a heartbreaker in this film, his reason for being with any girl is to con her. He is a charmer. And with each girl, the spin is different.

Isn't the girl-taking-revenge-on-a-boy angle similar to Yash Raj's Luv Ka The End?
Not at all. There is a revenge angle but all three individuals have their own reason for revenge, depending on the kind of con done by Ricky. The outcome too is definitely not the same as Luv Ka The End.

A lot has been written about Ranveer-Anushka's on-off relationship. Did that affect the atmosphere on sets?
(Laughs) Not at all. People can talk about arguments between technicians, issues or romance between actors; but it is part of the gossip. It's not possible for any director to be affected by that baggage because you are just there to make your film. Ranveer and Anushka are lovely people. They never brought their off-set baggage to work.

Whose choice was it to cast Priyanka Chopra's cousin, Parineeti Chopra?
Parineeti was working with the marketing department of Yashraj and I had a lot of interactions with her during the marketing of Band Baaja Baaraat. When I told Adi that I wanted to cast Parineeti in Ladies..., he laughed at me. But I felt that she had it in her. Adi asked me to take a call. Parineeti was shocked. She did an audition and I didn't even look at the tape because I was 100 per cent sure that she would suit the character.

Bollywood News Service

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