Exclusive Premium Content
Hansal Mehta: “Baai Is My Most Romantic Film To Date”
Hansal Mehta is back with a beautiful film entitled Baai. It is part of Amazon Prime Video’s admirable anthology Modern Love which starts streaming on 13 May. Hansal’s film—we can’t call it an episode—is one of the finest among the six stories which constitute the omnibus.
In it Hansal revisits the theme of homosexuality with far more vigour, delicacy and, yes,music than his brilliant but discreet Aligarh.There are plenty of intimate moments between Pratik Gandhi and Ranveer Brar who play lovers.
Hansal Mehta who is currently shooting a new webseries entitled Scoop in Kashmir explains, “I never treated Baai as part of an anthology or as a short film. I gave it the same love and attention as any of my full length feature films.In fact, I was the last of the six anthologists to complete my film. All the other directors submitted their complete films, and I was still shooting.”
Hansal is very proud of doing such a gentle same-sex film. “Pratik didn’t hesitate for even a second before saying yes .This was our reunion after the success of Scam(Applause Entertainment’s game-changing series). Baai is completely different universe from Scam. Pratik slipped into his role of a Muslim gay man effortlessly. Pratik and Rajkummar Rao are actors I can always depend on.”
For the role of Pratik’s co-star Hansal ventured into uncharted territory. “Ranveer Brar is star chef and this is his first acting assignment. I just felt he was right since he was playing a chef and well I just thought he had the acting chops in him. And I was right.”
By the way Hansal has a lifelong passion for food. “I started my career with Khana Khazana. I love cooking. Baai offered me a chance to make a film on my first love.”
There was so space for tenderness in Hansal’s last homosexual-themed film Aligarh. “This time in Baai I wanted the love story to be just that, a love story. I’ve treated the Pratik-Ranveer relationship as a full-fledged romance. The tender moments are organic to the plot.And really, it is time we stopped looking at screen intimacy as show stoppers.”
Hansal is specially proud of the songs and music in Baai. “I’ve never had the opportunity to use songs and music in this way. I wanted to create an intensely romantic ambience. I think I’ve succeeded in doing that. I am really proud of what I’ve achieved in Baai.”
About the impeccable casting Hansal Mehta says, “Mukesh Chabra got me the perfect actor for every role. Talat Aziz and Manasi Joshi are perfect as Pratik Gandhi’s parents.As for Tanujaji in the title role. She was the Dada on the sets.We were all scared of her.”