Every film comes with its own set of challenges — revolving around budget, deadline, location, etc. The Revenant that won multiple awards at the Oscars this year faced so many challenges that I would look silly even bringing up mine in front of them. Little things like wrapping up a shoot at a certain time, keeping things well within the budget, working with the weather conditions (we were shooting in Cunoor and the weather was erratic) posed small obstacles.
The real challenge for me was actually the story-telling part itself. I wanted to tell a story that had depth, scale and had more to do with its characters than anything else. Kapoor & Sons is a film that is more or less shot inside a house. But I wanted the film to be big in terms of emotions, psychology of the characters involved and their stories.
There were a few scenes that involved 6-7 people in the same frame and the scenes were 8-9 pages long. I had to keep them engaging and despite shooting in a confined space, had to keep the place alive and breathing.
As for my rapport with the cast, yes there were conflicts, arguments and discussions — especially with Rishi Kapoor. I am happy that at the end of the day, we wanted to reach the same destination and it was just that we took different routes. Rishiji called me after watching the film and told me that he has really liked it. I have some very fond memories of working with this cast — we had so much fun that after a point it didn’t seem like work at all. It has raised the expectations for all future films. So much so that there were times when I called my co-writer Ayesha and asked her if it was normal to have so much fun on the sets — because it didn’t seem right. After all, how can work be so much fun?