'Ranbir is not imitating Charlie Chaplin' - Anurag on 'Barfi!'
By Joginder Tuteja, MovieTalkies.com, 17 August 2012
Ever since Barfi! went on floors, there has been tremendous speculation around the part that Ranbir Kapoor plays in his film. While it was declared quite early in the day that he would be playing a deaf and mute young man in the film, there was also a strong buzz around him imitating Charlie Chaplin for a large part of the narrative. The theatrical promo that was recently unveiled further reaffirmed the fact that there were definite characteristic traits of the legendary actor that Ranbir had adopted for the film. Now that the film is gearing up for release, director Anurag Basu uncovers the mystery.
"Let me be honest here. The whole Chaplin influence was not there in the script when Ranbir came on board. In fact till the first day of the film's shoot, we hadn't planned anything around these lines. It is just that as we progressed, it was felt that certain scenes would be elevated if Ranbir got into that mode. So yes, there is silence in the film, something which is the core of it, and there is a Chaplin layer to it as well that has been introduced. However it isn't as if Ranbir is imitating Charlie Chaplin throughout the film. You can pretty much make out from the promo itself that Barfi! isn't set in Chaplin-sque mode", says Anurag.
What was decided though much before the film went on floors was to feature Ranbir Kapoor as the central protagonist in it. The youngster was Anurag's first choice and at least momentarily he didn't really have a Plan B in place in case Ranbir would have opted out.
"When I started work on the film, it was on a blank slate", says Anurag who has to credit films like Life In A Metro, Gangster and Murder, "As and when I moved ahead with the story, I realised that the only person who would have fit into the role was Ranbir. All other characters, including that of Priyanka Chopra, came in later. In fact I approached Ranbir also when everything was completed on paper."
Now we wait to see how it translates on the big screen as well once the film releases all over on 14th September.