Exploring political history with ‘Raazi’ was interesting for Jaideep Ahlawat

Mumbai: For actor Jaideep Ahlawat, who plays a pivotal role in Meghna Gulzar’s “Raazi”, the film’s story gave him a chance to explore the politics of the time before India and Pakistan went to war in 1971.

The film, which released on Friday, features Alia Bhatt as an Kashmiri girl who gets married to a Pakistani Army officer and works as a spy for India.

Jaideep told IANS: “‘Raazi’ explores a very interesting political phase before the 1971 war. The story was worth telling because it captures the relationship between three countries – India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, which was going through a turmoil then.”

“My character Khalid Mir is very well-versed with that. As an actor, it was very interesting for me to read the political history of that time to prepare for my character.”

Emphasising that “Raazi” is not a war film, Jaideep said: “The film is about the war, but does not show the war. The story of the film revolves around the strategy making phase that both the countries (India and Pakistan) went through before the war started.

“If we look at any war in the world history, once the war starts, it’s all about firing and death. But the most interesting phase is the preparation, that is why I found the story interesting,” added the actor, who got visibility in the film industry via “Gangs of Wasseypur”.

“Raazi” marked his first time association with Meghna as well as the film’s lead actress Alia. He said both women were fascinating to collaborate with. As the crew finished shooting the film within 48 days, he says it was only possible because of the extensive pre-production work done by the director.

“Meghna prepared a lot before we started shooting the film. She worked hard not only on the script but every detail that we get to see on-screen. We shot seven to eight scenes every day and there was no confusion among anyone.

“She worked with a very good team of young assistants, cinematographers, costume departments,” said the Film and Television Institute of India alumnus.

After “Raazi”, which has earned him rave reviews, he has a slate of projects in the pipeline. He believes the year is quite promising for him.

“I have just finished shooting two films with the amazing filmmaker, Dibakar Banerjee. I am acting in one of his short stories, which is a part of ‘Bombay Talkies 2’. The story features Manisha Koirala, Sanjay Kapoor and myself.

“I will also be seen in Dibakar’s another film ‘Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar’, starring Arjun Kapoor and Parineeti Chopra. Though Kamal (Hassan) sir’s ‘Vishwaroopam 2’ is ready, we are yet to find the right time to release the film,” he said.