Anushka Sharma plays a comical ghost in a shimmering gown, while Diljit Dosanjh will be seen in a romantic lead opposite her. Her second production, Phillauri, with her banner Clean Slate Films has generated some curiosity. The film is based on a Punjabi folklore, and her brother Karnesh is silently supporting her.
The actress says she wants to make content-based films on her banner. “That’s why I chose Phillauri. It’s a light-hearted film. We won’t make same kind of films every time. Phillauri is a love story with a ghost. It was an interesting concept, something new and matched our vision,” says Anushka.
Diljit says Karnesh, writer Anvita Dutta and director Anshai Lal approached him. “I loved the script and said yes immediately. They made me a shade darker with makeup,” he says.
This is the first time both have been cast together. Anushka says working with Diljit has been great. “He is an honest actor and it’s easy to work with such people. He is a good human being, very shy and very correct in his expressions. People are talking about our chemistry a lot,” says Anushka.
“She is an amazing actress. What I admire about her is that she didn’t have a filmy background, and yet she has set up her own production house. She made it on her own. Making good films is one thing, but releasing it successfully is another,” adds Diljit, who has been doing Punjabi and Hindi films. “Wherever work takes me, I’ll go. Be it England, Canada or Mumbai. All I want to do is good films.”
He will never take off his turban for a role. “When I was doing Punjabi films, a producer told me to take off my turban and shave my beard. I refused, and unfortunately his film didn’t release. My next film was a huge hit, and I realised that the turban made no difference. If a film is good it will do well at the box office any ways,” he explains.
Along with a successful acting career, Anushka has turned producer in a male-dominated arena. She differs: “I don’t believe any place is a man’s world, unless it’s a men’s toilet where only men can go. It is said actresses make films when their career is over. Why should I do that? I am doing well in my career and want to tell good stories. We have no fixed notions that we will do films based only in India. If our story is in San Francisco, we will shoot there.”
Diljit’s earliest memories of watching movies were mythological and period ones. “I loved watching Ramayana and Mahabharata on Doordarshan, as they had a lot of special effects. Electricity was scarce in villages, and we would be upset when it used to go off during movies.
I was inspired by Dharmendra and Amitabh Bachchan films, especially those which had fights. I would be upset by romantic movies. We used to play cards with pictures of Amitabh Bachchan’s and Dharmendra’s films,” laughs Diljit.
He was never into acting, as music was his passion. “I wanted to become a singer in Punjab. I was offered Punjabi films, and because all singers were doing those films.”
Diljit is enjoying his stint as a celebrity judge on the TV show The Rising Star. “I never knew that television is so huge. The last serial I saw was Shaktimaan.” He is also doing his first Punjabi superhero film titled Super Singh.
Anushka has completed shooting for Imtiaz Ali’s The Ring with Shah Rukh Khan.