Just a few days ago, we were invited to Ram Gopal Varma’s swanky office, aptly titled COMPANY in big bold letters. And we entered his plush establishment, we were astounded by the character that the establishment held. However, what really intrigued was the name that every single room was given the name of an eminent personality, from Narendra Modi to Donald Trump, you name it!
However, what really caught our eye was a room which was named after RGV’s Rangeela star Urmila Matondkar. We couldn’t help ourselves but ask Ram Gopal Varma himself about the mystery behind it, which kick-started our round of conversations with the genius director. Here are some questions that the director answered for us:
Why is it that out of all the actresses that you have worked with, the only one you have a room named after is Urmila Matondkar?
I believe that Rangeela was one of the most defining films of my career and I have never been able to write a character which is as impactful as that of Urmila, who, in my opinion, has played the character in a way that no one else could have. For me, she was, is and always be the actress who is at the top of the food chain.
Why is it that whenever you express yourself on Twitter, there is so much hate that comes your way?
My understanding of a platform like Twitter is that it’s an extension of your personality, where you are free to express your opinion as and when you feel like doing so. I’ve always been a guy with an opinion which he not afraid to express in a blunt manner, be it through my words or my work. It’s natural for people to have a difference of opinion. If people don’t agree to my opinion, they should simply unfollow me instead of blowing the whole matter out of proportion.
What do you keep in mind while casting an actor?
I think it’s important to understand and imagine the character you have penned down, then you tend you have a clearer picture of what kind of actors will be suitable for the part. An individual is only suitable if you have a real life person who is almost in the same space as the character, cause that’s when he can justify the role and create an impact, which is of prime importance to me.
What do you think of Narendra Modi as a Prime Minister?
I really like him as a leader. I am not concerned which political party he belongs to. I like his personality, which is a very impactful one. I’m as fond of him as I am of Sarkar the character.
Had it not been Amitabh playing Sarkar, who do you think could have played the part?
I don’t think Sarkar would have even seen the light of day. This character was tailor-made for Amitabh (Bachchan)
How is it that every kind of cinema that you put up looks real?
In my opinion, the reason why it seems real to us is because the kind of emotions that you see in a film like Company or Sarkar, they are all inspired by real life emotions and reactions. The thing with us humans is that when we connect to something emotionally, it seems real to us, and that is what I intend to do. Long story short, I’m tricking the audience in a big way! (Laughs)
Has your equation changed with Jackie Shroff ever since you have called his son (Tiger Shroff) a lot of unsavory things on Twitter?
I did apologise on Twitter for my actions. I truly believe that I went overboard this time. I shouldn’t have done it. Jackie and I spoke over the phone and have sorted things out. I understand that it’s okay to joke until and unless it is not hurting people, and not all can take the kind of jokes I make, and it’s completely respectable. To each his own.
Is there any character from the Sarkar franchise that you personally identify with?
I don’t believe that I identify with any of the characters. Because I am a naturalist who is too fascinated with psychological aspects of people. I believe that every character plays an important part in the film, so I feel responsible for giving their emotions the due respect. But I don’t personally identify with any of them.
It takes a certain kind of intelligence to appreciate your kind of cinema. It’s not exactly for the masses. How do feel about other kinds of cinema?
I don’t connect to film genres like the slice of life or RomCom, but it’s fine. Different people have different tastes. It’s quite natural. It doesn’t mean that if I don’t like something, it shouldn’t exist. That’s how the world is.
Have you ever thought that a movie can be made on your life?
Who would want to? A biopic is a story of a lot of emotional ups and downs and struggles. I, on the other hand, am a thick skinned buffalo who has had no emotions! (Laughs)