Gangster is not based on Abu Salem’s life” Says Anurag Basu

MUMBAI :Director Anuraag Basu of Murder fame whose next venture Gangster is all set for a April 28, release. The film has been into controversy as gangster Abu Salem has brought a stay order on the release of the film. He claims that the story of the film is based on his life. Director Anurag Basu refutes the claims. “My film Gangster is not based on the life of Abu Salem,” he retorts. “I don’t know why he is claiming and creating problems. The media mentioned that it was based on his life and Abu Salem slammed a case against us” adds the director. “We are ready to screen the film for them if the court asks us to. His claims are not going to made any difference to us.

Our film has been passed by the censor board” says the director. “Producer –director Mahesh Bhatt has given me his full support and I am confident that it not going to create any further issues. Gangster is a simple love story,” says director Anurag Basu.

The films stars Emraan Hashmi and newcomer Kangana in the lead with Shiney Ahuja in a pivotal role of a gangster. Director Anurag Basu had earlier signed Sanjay Dutt and cricketer Shoaib Akhtar for the lead role. ” Yes claims the director. I had narrated the script to Sanjay Dutt but he had date problems and so refused to do the film.

“I had also planned to take Shoaib Akhtar who heard the narration and agreed to do the role. But couldn’t keep the commitments as he was engaged in a county match and was called back. During the course I was left without work for one and half years. So finally we zeroed in on this starcast” adds the director. “Emraan has performed the role of a boy next door. Very different from the image that he has portrayed so far in films like Murder. He is playing a very positive role” quips Anurag Basu. What is the USP of the film? We ask.

The music and my heroine Kangana is the USP of my film. Pritam is an old friend and he has given amazing music. We worked very hard on the music since he ball was in my court this time. I was given total freedom by my producer Mahesh Bhatt. It is totally original. There is one song specially sung by a Bangladeshi singer James who came down to sing this particular song “bheegi bheegi”. I have always been a James fan and listen to his songs.

We had to face a lot of problems during the recording. James was not getting a visa and Mahesh Bhatt had to arrange for one. Secondly the song is special because James does not a word of hindi and has rendered the song so well. I have made a special promo song for the film.

What’s made him sign her? “Well I had auditioned many girls for this film but none interested me. When I saw Kangana in a restaurant I realized that this was the face I was looking for. She was very different. I auditioned her and she agreed since she had an author backed role. She has also been signed by Mahesh Bhatt for the role of Parveen Babi in his forthcoming film” he replies.

The director is now busy with his next film based on Suicide Bomber and the 7/11 attacks in London. Made by Vishesh Films, the film will be made on an international scale. “I can’t reveal further details as Mahesh Bhatt has to decide further. In the meantime I am working on another film. We are busy with the music now. I am sorry I can’t reveal the details” he says.

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