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Shaad Ali: “A  Remake Should Not Be A Repeat Performance”

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Shaad Ali

The  talented  but  underused  director Shaad Ali is  back after  a  long hiatus with what looks  like  clutter breaker  on Netflix. His first  webseries Call My Agent is  his first  in three years. His last directorial  was the well-received sports  film Soorma.

“I know  it’s been  long. But I didn’t want to work  with any producer that I was not fully comfortable with. Sameer Nair of Applause Entertainment is  a  kindred spirit. It’s a pleasure to be  working with  someone so sorted. I’ve enjoyed making Call My Agent with Applause Entertainment.We are  already collaborating on something else,” says  Shaad who is  excited  about the  streaming of his first digital  project from October  29.

“I am  nervous  because Call My Agent  takes me   into  a new space.Also because  the  original  content in French Dix Pour Cent  was   so popular  worldwide. My challenge  was  to do a remake  that preserved the  flavour and  tongue-in-cheek humour of  the original  and yet  had a  life of its own. There’s no point in doing  a remake that simply  copies the  original,” explains Shaad.

He is grateful to his cast. “Soni and Rajat are invaluable.Aahana Kumra, Ayush Mehra, Soni Razdan and Rajat Kapoor are the perfect actors for  their roles. While Aahana simply owns  her character, Ayush is  a    newcomer. But  his performance is  pitch-perfect. I also have a  slew  of  Bollywood stars  like  Richa Chaddha, Ali Faizal, Dia Mirza and Farah  Khan  playing themselves, not because they were kind enough  to be  a part of my series, but also because each one was needed for the part they played.”

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Shaad hopes he  has been able to do justice  to  the  remake. “I know how to be faithful to the original without making a  blind copy.I’ve done it in Saathiya which  was  a remake of Mani Ratnam’s Alai Payuthe.”