New Delhi: Between “Pehla Nasha” and “Mohenjo Daro”, Ashutosh Gowariker’s filmography is really short and the director says his wife keeps asking him to make something contemporary and finish within a year.
“Mohenjo Daro”, starring Hrithik Roshan as an indigo farmer during the Indus Valley civilisation and newcomer Pooja Hegde as his love interest, is Gowariker’s first release after “Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey”, which came in 2010. His only other project in between was TV drama “Everest”.
“For Hrithik, the gap is shorter than mine. So, I am really looking forward to the reaction. I do feel that the gap has been long. Sunita keeps telling me why can’t we make a contemporary film and finish it in a year. I want to do that but I need to have a story that inspires me,” Gowariker told PTI in an interview.
The 52-year-old “Lagaan” director’s fascination for larger-than-life stories is partly responsible for the gap as he likes to do research on his own.
“I like creating another world, era and time zone. Within that era, what attracts me is to tell an untold story. It is great fun. In ‘Jodhaa Akbar’, the chapter that was missing was what happened in their chamber. So, it was exciting to create that romance in Mughal period.
“‘Mohenjo Daro’ is based purely on archaeological findings and since there was not much, it was exciting to create a love story and drama.”
There has been some criticism of historical inaccuracy in his film, which released today, but for Gowariker it was interesting to cull out a story from what he says is “just a paragraph” in history books.
“This is our first civilisation and we know nothing about it. In fact, we just had a paragraph in school books, few artifacts here and there and the excavation site.
“I always thought if people worldwide are making movies on Greek and Egyptian civilisation and celebrating them, then why can’t we?”
“Mohenjo Daro”, he says, took more time because he did not have much as source material unlike Mughal or British era.
“This one took more time because when you make something historical, you can refer to history books. But this civilisation is pre-history, so there was not much source material.”
Gowariker says it was easier approaching Hrithik the second time for his film as they had a great working experience on “Jodhaa Akbar”.
“Hrithik has this larger-than-life presence on screen and the civilisation is also larger-than-life. His talent as an actor and his personality as a performer was important for the film. If Hrithik had not said yes, I would probably not have made the film.”