Director Kabir Khan is thrilled with the response he has had for his soon to release film 83’s trailer. For a maker who has shelled out hit films like New York, Ek Tha Tiger and Bajrangi Bhaijaan and even flops like Phantom and Tubelight – he feels that the feedback from the audiences and the film fraternity has been the best in his career. “I don’t remember when I had had such a fabulous response to any of my trailers so far. I am completely overwhelmed, and I realised that people like the space and the idea of the film. And hopefully, they will come and watch the film,” Kabir says.
83 traces the story of India’s historic win in the 1983 cricket world cup when India beat West Indies in the final of the World Cup. The team led by Kapil Dev braved all odds to win the trophy. Ranveer Singh plays the lead in the film, and Kabir says that it is not just telling the story but also about living up to the expectations of the people.
A still from the film | Pic: Instagram/kabirkhankk
“It is not just about recreating history. People who are in their late 40s, 50 and 60s will definitely remember this moment, and they will know so much about not just this final match but will also know about other matches that India played. They will also be able to tell you what they were doing when India won the world cup. It is a recent history, and hence there is a huge challenge and responsibility in recreating an iconic moment. People know what kind of clothes were worn, how someone's batting and bowling actions were, etc. So there was a lot of attention paid to detail. But more than all that, one has to also remember the wave of happiness that was felt across the country at that time on June 25, 1983. The effort is to recreate that,” Kabir explains.
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The filmmaker is all praise for Ranveer’s dedication towards getting Dev’s expressions and bowling action right. “Everyone is telling me that they cannot see Ranveer in the film, but they can only see Kapil Dev. The best compliment came from cricketer Kirti Azad who was part of the winning team. He said that he could only see his captain when he watched the trailer. It is great that we are getting these responses,” Kabir shares.
Kabir had issued a word of caution to Ranveer after casting him. “I told Ranveer that this was not a lookalike contest. Everyone knows that you are an actor and you are going to play this role of Kapil Dev. So what Ranveer has got right is the expression, and the way he talks on screen has had this impact which is much more than the look," he says.
"Everyone says that Kapil Dev’s bowling action is one of the toughest to emulate, and Ranveer has managed to do that by sheer hard work. We used to practice at Bandra, and he used to come there daily for four hours every day for a period of five months to get it right. The best part was that we had the great Kapil Dev himself come and train Ranveer. Only after he said, ‘Yes, you are now bowling like me’, did he actually pass the test,” Kabir signs off.
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