Filmmaker Vishal Bhardwaj has worked with a gamut of ace actors ranging from Om Puri, Naseeruddin Shah and Pankaj Kapur to Irrfan and Tabu. But, Bhardwaj says that with actor Priyanka Chopra he shares a special relation. “Ek to she’s a huge star, vo to sab ko pata hai par she’s a very real person. When you are with her, you don’t feel that Priyanka is a star. Mujhe lagta hai Priyanka dost hai (I feel Priyanka is my friend). Matlab uske sath yaron wali baat hai,” he says.
Bhardwaj and Chopra have worked earlier in films such as Kaminey (2009) and 7 khoon maaf (2011). And now the filmmaker reveals that he desires to work with her again. “Priyanka is now a huge international star; I met her 3-4 times in New York. But she’s still the same, and we both are looking forward to work with each other. Most probably I’ll do my [adaptation of, Shakespeare’s] Twelfth Night with her,” says Bhadwaj who has earlier made a trilogy on Shakespearean works — Maqbool (2003), Omkara (2006) and Haider (2014).
Presently the director is working on his film Churiyan with actors Sanya Malhotra and Radhika Madan, and admits that there’s a hidden benefit to work with actors who are from northern parts of the country. “Dilli aur north se jo actors aate hain unki Hindi bahut achchi hoti hai. Woh at least Devnagri me padte hai, nahi to logon ne to Hindi ko bhi Roman mein padna shuru kar diya hai (Actors from Delhi and north India have a good hold on Hindi. At least they read Hindi in the Devnagri script, otherwise people have started even reading Hindi in Roman,” he adds.
Has he ever sent his actors to Delhi to improve their Hindi? “Yes, a lot of people. But that I shouldn’t say (laughs).”