Rahul Dholakia is eager for his upcoming film, Raees which features Shahrukh Khan. Tallking to an entertainment tabloid he said, “I don’t use the word ‘great’ to describe my work, so I’ll simply say I’m quite happy with the way the film has shaped up. For me the journey has always been more important than the end result and this one which has spanned almost five years for me has been fascinating.”
He also revealed that his friends in the liquor business urged him to make a film on prohibition, and assured him that they would get it funded. “I decided to weave crime, politics and prohibition into an interesting story about a cop and a gangster and called up a reporter friend, Ashish Vashi, asked him if he knew anyone who could help me with the research. He’d written on the subject and was happy to jump on board, along with another journalist, Harit Mehta and a writer friend, Neeraj Shukla, who’d worked with me on a TV show,” recalls the director, who travelled from Umbergaon to Bhuj between 2011-2012, working on the story.
Allegedly, Raees is inspired by gangster Dawood henchmen, Abdul Latif, a bootlegger-turned-don. Dholakia who’s in the midst of a court case, refutes this buzz saying the movie and the character are works of fiction created by its writers.
The director was further asked whether the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s demonetization will affect the film’s box-office considering that the story is set in Gujarat? “It’s set in pre-Modi Gujarat which was very different. I’m not making a political statement here. Nor did I want to create any controversies. Raees is an entertaining commercial film which Mr Modi will enjoy as much as the common man,” he says.