Khan and Khurana in Karwaan
Even as cinephiles continue to pray for actor Irrfan Khan’s speedy recovery, another of his films is set to hit screens next month. Karwaan will be the second movie starring Khan to release after he announced that he had been diagnosed with a ‘rare condition’. Director Akarsh Khurana says he has been “sporadically” in touch with Khan, even as producer Ronnie Screwvala is “speaking to him regularly, and updating us.”
As he continues to heal on foreign turf, Khan is keeping a watch on his ventures in India. “[He had seen] the first cut [of the film] before he took ill, and the final cut, recently. He spoke with me after that, and seems pleased with the way it has shaped up,” says the actor-director, adding that any scope of participation in the film’s promotions will depend on Khan’s health. “His recovery is of utmost importance.”
Screwvala, Salmaan, Palkar
For the debutant director, working with Khan implied that he, and the unit, were rendered “mostly in awe” of his work. “[During] the first couple of days [of working together], we were a bit intimidated. [But] he put us all at ease, and was extremely comfortable to work with. He enjoyed being [on location] in Kerala, and was quite taken by it.
As for his role, he had done thorough homework, and built a persona, with a dialect, for Shaukat. He had loved [the] dialogues from the first narration itself, so, he was happy to be spouting the lines. His occasional improvisations had us in splits,” says the director, quick to add the there were no signs of illness when they were on set. “In fact, he was in very good shape. Hence, our shock was even more compounded [when we heard of his illness].”
His road trip comedy marks the Bollywood debut of South superstar Dulquer Salmaan, apart from also featuring web sensation Mithila Palkar. Khurana understands that the camaraderie between the three lead actors plays a crucial role in defining the film’s success. Interestingly, he didn’t conduct any particular workshop to enable them to build the equation. “Dulquer, Irrfan, and Mithila met on the sets for the first time. We shot more or less chronologically, so their relationship formed as it was supposed to evolve in the film.”