Raid director Rajkumar Gupta: Working with Ajay Devgn requires extra effort

Updated: Feb 07, 2018, 09:29 IST | Mohar Basu | Mumbai

Stating that Ajay Devgn is discerning as an artiste, director Rajkumar Gupta says actor can be lured only by power-packed script

Ajay Devgn
Ajay Devgn

Given that he has limited films to his credit since his Bollywood debut in 2008, Rajkumar Gupta admits that luring Ajay Devgn into greenlighting his film, Raid, was a challenge. "When you have an enviable body of work, like he does, and your repertoire boasts of acclaimed films, you are tough to lure," he says about his leading man.

Given that Devgn, over his three-decade-long career has "seen and worked on every type of film", he isn't easily impressed, Gupta says. "To merely say that you have a concept in mind for him, will not appeal to him. We went to him with a strong script, and that's what convinced him to do it. When you are working with Ajay sir, you have to put in an extra bit of effort."

Rajkumar Gupta
Rajkumar Gupta

Raid, set in the '80s against the backdrop of Lucknow, is based on a real-life income tax raid believed to be among the most significant in the history of India. "I first heard of this story when Kumar Mangat Pathak [producer] mentioned it. It seemed like an interesting idea. Ritesh Shah [writer] and I started developing it."

Since the story is inspired by true events, maintaining authenticity and taking cinematic liberties simultaneously was like balancing on a tightrope. "To be able to delve into the creation of a film apt for the big screen, I had to deviate from the truth. We had to make the story entertaining and energetic."

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