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The shooting of scary mid-air sequence in Dhamaal

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Thursday, September 06, 2007

Inder Kumar has produced numerous films before but the making of Dhamaal has changed his approach towards action scenes forever. A mid-air sequence, which is currently being aired in the film's promos, required Ashish Choudhary and Asrani to pretend that their plane was out of control. The crew, including Kumar, was in a chopper shooting the plane flying over Baramati, in the interiors of Maharashtra. Surrounded by big mountains and thick forests below, the area was specifically chosen for the shoot because it has low air traffic. The crew had to keep the door of the helicopter open so that the lens of the camera could protrude outside and catch a clear shot.

Recollecting the experience, Kumar said: "It was scary. We were at a high altitude with strong winds blowing. We had to hold the cameraman and the camera tightly from behind so that the scenes could be shot properly. We would get ready for the shot as soon as we caught sight of the plane from far away. The scary part was that the plane veered too close for comfort quite a few times. A collision was just about avoided two or three times. When I was done with the shot, I heaved a sigh of relief and said, 'Jaan bachi to lakhon paye'. I sweared never again to attempt such a shoot." The entire sequence, comprising just a few shots, took around five hours to shoot.

Speaking about the film, he said: ""Masti" was mild, but Dhamaal is wild." About the film not having a female lead, the producer says: "There was no room for a heroine in our script. We had planned to sign an actress opposite Sanjay, but then the other heroes too would have demanded heroines. So we dropped the idea. We had also planned an item song but scrapped that too. We have taken a big risk by making a completely male-dominated movie."

This is not the first time, however, that Kumar has taken a risk. "We all knew that "Pyaare Mohan" would be a flop but by the time we realized that, it was too late. So we could not help it. In fact, Vivek Oberoi and I used to talk about changing many things in the movie. And since Dhamaal was slated before "Pyaare Mohan", we cooked up many things in a hurry resulting in the latter's failure at the box-office."

Dhamaal was shot while Dutt was attending his court trials. Though it didn't create any bottlenecks, it did leave the cast and crew worried. "We wanted to complete the shooting as soon as possible. In fact, Sanjay was very co-operative. We were praying that he be released soon," said Kumar. The director was all praise for the veteran actor. "Sanjay is one actor who needs just a single briefing and he would be ready for the shot. We chose him for the film because he is among the rare breed that can appear tough and look vulnerable at the same time. He has that innocence in his smile and I wanted my character to have both the shades," reveals Kumar. The premiere of the film was cancelled earlier, but now that Sanjay is out on bail, it might be arranged soon.

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