Shamshera was so difficult to make, Ranbir Kapoor had conversations with God

Actor Ranbir Kapoor launched the trailer of Shamshera in Mumbai on Friday. At the event, he spoke about how challenging the process of making the dacoit drama was for him.

When asked if being cast in a big-budget, multi-genre film makes him feel validated, Ranbir said, “It is not validation. We work very hard on a film for years. Like, two-three years we worked on Shamshera, so many years on Brahmastra. Even when I did Sanju, there was a lot of apprehension. But it’s not just about (that). It is a collective of so many people coming together to make a film. It is not easy. If everyone had a formula then everyone would have been Mukesh Ambani. Nobody is. It is a challenge. It is a big risk when you do high octane action entertainers. I hope the audience likes Shamshera because that’s (our) only endeavor.”

Ranbir Kapoor has delivered noteworthy performances in films such as Rockstar, Barfi, Rocket Singh Salesman of the Year among others. In those films, he played underdog characters. About transitioning into playing larger-than-life characters, he said, “It was very hard for me (to do this film). Karan (Malhotra, director) held my hand. One thing I lack as an actor is angst. I am not an angry person. I am a fun loving, happy and detached guy. Karan was like, ‘How do I extract the emotion of anger for the character?’ He started going deeper into my personal life. He wanted to tap into that side of me. So, it’s a partnership. I got a great creative partner in Karan. It was a very hard role and there were many days when I was like ‘I can’t do this’. Besides the physical stress, there was mental stress. The emotions were up there. I was talking to God and saying, ‘I am working hard. Give it back to me’. I went through those days and I am glad I did. Without a director like Karan, I would not have been able to do this (role).”

Ranbir also said that he is happy that filmmakers are now offering him different kinds of films, and mature roles. He said, “Eight years back, I wouldn’t be offered films like Rowdy Rathore or a Dabangg because I wouldn’t fit into those parts. Because I was a younger actor, I didn’t have that opportunity. It is also tricky. Being part of well-made (films) is way easier than being part of a good commercial masala entertainer, as it is a multi-genre film. It has action, comedy, romance, emotion, family. It has got everything. And to make that amalgamation of emotions work is very hard.”

Ranbir Kapor’s last theatrical release was Sanju, a biopic on Sanjay Dutt’s life. So, how was it sharing screen space with Dutt himself in Shamshera? Ranbir said, “This man (Dutt) standing next to me is my first idol, my hero. I had a poster of him. He has been a family friend. Then I got to act as him, got to portray his life and now I got to fight with him. The journey has been unbelievable. He treats me like his son, brother, friend. He calls me and shouts at me when I am doing bad films. When I was doing Barfi, he would tease me saying about what I will do next, ‘Peda’ or ‘Ladoo’? He insisted that I should larger-than-life characters, and I believe Shamshera is a positive step towards that.”

Shamshera, also starring Vaani Kapoor, is scheduled to release in theatres on July 22.

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