People think I make mad, sad films, but my films are about love: Sanjay Leela Bhansali

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Sanjay Leela Bhansali on changing colours with 'Ram-Leela'. (Express archive photo) Sanjay Leela Bhansali on changing colours with 'Ram-Leela'. (Express archive photo)
SummaryFilmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali on changing colours with 'Ram-Leela'.

Is Ram-Leela’s red palette an indication that you are done with the blues and the blacks?

Jo daba ke rakha tha itne time se, it’s all come out in this one. I’ve been fearless while making this film. For Ram-Leela, I looked at Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. The colour palette is red because after the Catholic colours of Black and Guzaarish and the Muslim green of Saawariya, I wanted to move into a new zone. So I went back to my Gujarati roots. I went back to my Bhuleshwar childhood which was replete with achaar and theplas. It’s the first time I’ve named a heroine after my mother. Ram is like my father. This is a tribute to a love story that I wanted to see as a child — the one I hoped existed. I’ve given my all to Ram-Leela and couldn’t make it better if given another chance.

Is there a film that you feel would become better if you made it again?

'Khamoshi'. I feel that film was a dishonest moment in my career because somewhere, I compromised. I was forced to change the ending. I was told that the audience would stop watching the film midway, so I gave in. Since it was my first film, I didn’t know any better.

No other film? What about Saawariya?

Not even Saawariya. Yes, it failed, but I won’t change anything about it. It is the film that I wanted to make. I’m proud of it.

But how do you react to a failure? How do you get it out of your system?

The moment the first trailer of the film goes out, a part of me goes out with it and when the film releases, in a way, I get released from it. Within 10 days, I’m onto the next film. I’ve never taken a break of more than two-three days after a film. I want to quickly get onto the new story with a new team because that’s the way I get rejuvenated.

The tagline of Ram-Leela is ‘Goliyon ki raas leela’. We’ve seen you handle raas leela in your films, but the golis are surprising.

I can’t live in my comfort zone forever. It’s really funny because till date, action in my movies hasn’t gone beyond a slap. Whenever I used to call (action director) Shyam Kaushal, he would get very irritated and tell me, ‘Kya, thappad hi maarne ka

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