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Sriram Raghavan: “Varun & I Are Starting Ekkis In September-October Next Year”

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Sriram Raghavan: “Varun & I Are Starting Ekkis In September-October Next Year” 6

After Badlapur we were eager to see the  brilliant Sriram  Raghavan tap Varun Dhawan’s acting skills in Ekkis ,  a war film produced by Dinesh Vijan, Ekkis is  a bio-pic  on the  Paramvir Chakra winner Arun Khetarpal.

 When  I touch base with Sriram(after a long time , I must confess) I pointblank ask him about rumours suggesting that Ekkis has been shelved.

He calmly  explained, “No  it’s not shelved. We were supposed to shoot in September this year. Preparation was to start in April. But then we  all know what happened. Ekkis has been pushed forward  to  next year. I need  a specific  weather in  September-October to shoot in battle  locations.So even if Covid recedes we will have to wait until September 2021.”

Sriram says Varun is  very excited  about  playing Arun Khetarpal. “In fact he  called me a while back.  Poor chap must be  bored in quarantine. I told him he must get in shape for  the  role. I don’t want Ekkis to be just another bio-epic. I want it to be  reflective of  the solidier’s personality. Varun has to do a lot of preparation. For  Andha Dhun Ayushmann had to learn  to  play the piano,  even if it was just three musical pieces. Varun has to work a  lot harder to look convincing.He  must go on location, meet other soldiers. Meet  Arun’s family. He  needs  to understand the language  of a soldier. The agility and  the alertness , to begin with. If I  were to climb into a  tank I’d probably  need  a  chair . Varun has to jump into the tank as if he belonged  in it.We  also need to source the artillery  and  the  tanks , etc.”

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Borrow them  from  J P Dutta, I joke.

“Ha, that weaponry won’t work here,” Sriram quips.

While Sriram  waits  to start Ekkis he may do a small film for  the OTT platform. “Let’s see. I have been writing something  for  the digital platform. I haven’t stepped  out of my home since Covid. I’ve an old mother at home.And I can’t risk infection.So I’ve been writing.I may do a small film for  the streaming platform before Ekkis.”