‘The biggest challenge was to get the right cast for Acid Factory’ – Suparn Varma

Two film old director, Suparn Varma is ready to release his action packed film, Acid Factory on 9 October. Speaking to Businessofcinema.com, the director talks at length on directing a fine motley of characters.


How did you decide on the casting for your film?

It was a huge challenge to cast for my film. Each actor that has been chosen has an image and I decided to do away with their screen images and cast them in different roles.

Let’s start with Dia Mirza…
Oh let me tell you that it was I who needed to be convinced that she could do this role. When I went to meet her to narrate my film I had my reservations. One has always perceived Dia to be a delicate peaches and cream creation. There is something very fairy like about her and she brings out the protective instincts in a man. But Dia was very enthusiastic and she instinctively knew that I was not convinced. Then she showed me a collection of photographs where she had done the makeup and costumes similar to the girl I wanted to cast. After seeing those I could visualize her in my film.

But thereafter, Dia went out of her way to prepare herself for the role. Her body was toned to make it lean, her body posture became more aggressive and as she was told that she would be shot just like the other men, her makeup was given a slight edge. Dia is undoubtedly the star package in my film.

What about Manoj Bajpai…

It is difficult to talk about each individual actor in my film as Acid Factory is about group dynamics. I was basically shooting with actors who come from three different types of acting. While Dino, Aftab and Fardeen have been cast in rom coms, the others like Irfan and Danny come from contrasting acting backgrounds. But each of them were given a definite character sketch and it is clearly visible in my film.

So what is Acid Factory about?
My film is set in an Acid Factory and in the course of my research I found that there is a certain chemical compound which causes memory loss amongst the workers. Now these actors have no memory and yet in order to survive have to play survival games. The film is set in Cape Town and for the interior portions, we erected a set in Hyderabad as I needed a very big floor to capture the different aspects of the factory.

How much is Sanjay Gupta, the producer of the film, involved? Was there any interference from his side?
Sanjay Gupta and I co-wrote the screenplay of the film. Before shooting, we went through the pre production with a fine tooth comb. Since he has been a director he knows that space. Once he is convinced he will go out of his way to accommodate any production demands. As a producer, he was fantastic.

Has the transition from a writer to a director been easy for you?
Honestly, I always visualize when I write. As a director I am only executing what I am seeing. And as for the technicalities, I have the best of technicians to help me with that. Pre production is very important, mine lasted for almost 6 months. The storyboard was made and the colours were discussed. I shot my first film, Ek Haseena Thi in 42 days and Acid Factory in 50 days.

Acid Factory, the title of your film is very hard hitting..
That’s precisely the way we wanted it. We did not want the number games and work around the seven stars in the film on the title. We did not want any emotive title. We also tested for the title Acid Factory amongst a few cine goers and when we got a positive response, we went ahead with it.

And finally, you must be glad to have a solo release on the 9 October.
I am glad that there are no other releases. I don’t want any bloodshed. As it is there is a lot of action in my film, so I think it is best limited to cinema screens.