Recently, we at Cine Talkers happened to interview the ‘A Thursday’ team. Yami Gautam, Neha Dhupia, and Director Behzad Khambata shared their experience from the sets and film. The film received a positive response from the critics and Yami’s intense acting makes it a worth watch.
In an exclusive interview at Cine Talkers, we asked the ‘A Thursday’ team, did they expect it to be such a big thing while they were making a film?
Director Behzad Khambata said, “I think we all had a very good sense that we had a good script, and I have a very strong belief ‘A happy set is a happy film’. We genuinely did have a very happy set, I mean not counting what Naina (Yami Gautam) was doing to the children”, But outside of that we had a very happy set, I think we all had a great time shooting so somewhere you got that feeling that you’re on the right track.
Adding to this Khambata said, I think I knew I had a moment on set when Yami shot the climax in one take, and I think that is where I knew that yeah this film is on”
Neha surprisingly said, “Really, even I didn’t know this Yami!”
Taking the conversation further, Khambata said, “Yeah one take, I mean then I did go for a close-up place two cameras and said go for it, and Yami went for it. Dimple ma’am on the opposite side also was bagging so that was it well done, that’s the moment I knew that we have a film.”
2) When you direct actors who just amaze everyone on screen every time so is it a difficult situation or is it a very easy situation for you to direct them?
Behzad explained, “It makes my life very easy. When they are all in the zone, and all of them have gotten the character that was there in my head and they all understood it. When we were doing narrations and we would do script readings, what I liked is each one came with their twist to certain lines certain moments like Yami Gautam, Neha Dhupia, Atul sir.
In the middle of the night I would get a voice note which I’m thinking ‘can we tweak, should we tweak this, will this work’ and I’ll be like Okay, makes sense. So that involvement that when to start getting from the main people as in the pillars of what is seen on the screen, I think it just makes things so much easier versus we know people who come unprepared to set and then it’s just getting difficult”
3) Yami Gautam, how did you manage to keep those two very different expressions throughout the film?
Yami Gautam replied, “This was one of the roles where there was no physical activity I had to learn but I had to internalize and get into. I don’t have to lean on anything when my script has everything for me. All I have to do is be so thorough with it, keep reading it to the time like you’re tired and that is when your real prep starts for me, and that’s how when you start identifying something, every time you read it.”
“For me, the picture of Naina or how I see with Naina was very clear because you start imagining that the switch has to come on that line…. but that shouldn’t look like a force to you there should be still room for it to be for you to be prepared and yet spontaneous enough so it looks natural
Yami Gautam further added, “We people who are behind this film didn’t anywhere feel like this film deserves less. A lot of intense work, mental prep, emotional prep, and knowing at the same time that this is the geography this is how the scene is blocked, this is how the scene is shot. So having all that clarity and maintaining that balance between the creative self, the emotional self, and the technical aspects I think all in all Behzaad said this is one of the best sets for me”
The film has so many layers so many curves so many emotions. It all feels worth it when we read everybody’s and it’s still pouring in all the love and the response,” revealed Yami.
4. Neha, how much pampering she get on the set while shooting with the 8-month baby bump and how difficult was it?
Neha sharing her funny experience on the set, said, “I was pampered a lot. Every time I was craving, I was like ‘Aaj strawberry milkshake pina hai’ and our producer Ashley would say, ‘strawberry milkshake lekar aao’, by then my craving would change like 20 minutes later I’d be like ‘ab muze bhendi khane ka mann kr raha hai’, When you have pregnancy cravings they are very very like kuch bhi ho bas chahiye’. While the shooting at the school there were street food stalls and one Upma wali lady who would sit there by 9 am. And every day I said my driver ‘jaldi chalo jaldi chalo nhi to wo upma wali chali jayegi.’
Talking on a serious note, she said, “while shooting in the rain and in the middle of the pandemic with all precautions, you’re responsible for the entire unit because you hired in certain physical shape and more than anything else more important is you’re giving life so When I would come on the set everybody like dur ho jao, dur ho jao. I was like ‘itna apyaar muze agar milta if i were not pregnant to alag baat thi’
5. Is it difficult or is it easy to shoot in the whole film in one location?
The director said I would tell you what is easy parts were, easy parts were it is about 7 minutes from my house so I was very happy and it got difficult when you’re restricted for the camera angles, and there was crowd, police, barricades, so there was so much tam jam outside that it eventually started getting difficult.
6. A Thursday was always meant to be a film to release on OTT? And how do you differentiate between theatrical release and OTT release?
“It was always an OTT film. This is the first time I directed for OTT. And there is Box office pressure because it becomes a numbers game, we expect people to go on Friday, Saturday, Sunday. And I have personally known the really good films have not done numbers tagged as a flop which is not fair But versus OTT the power of the internet and social media is so much. If they don’t like it they will let you know. In the pandemic, if this were in the theatre how many people would have gone that’s always another question. I am glad that a film like is gone on OTT,” concluded the director.
‘A Thursday’ stars Yami Gautam in a never before seen avatar.
Take a look at the full interview here: