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Nupur Asthana talks about her version of Romeo-Juliet

Sonali Joshi Pitale | Updated on: 17 April 2017, 16:20 IST

 Nupur, who has done films like Mujhe Se Fraaandship Karoge and Bewakoofiyaan, is set to make her first web series Romil and Jugal, which is a love story of gay couple for Ekta Kapoor’s ALT Balaji channel. The filmmaker speaks about working with Yrf, Ekta and her show.

Remembering her struggle to make her first film; even after making a successful television show, Nupur says, “I thought I will be able to make a movie easily after making successful television show Hip Hip Hurray. But I was wrong; it took me 10 years to make a movie. I wanted to save my best for my film. I spoke to many people and a couple of times  I was about to start my film but it never went on floor. Then I started thinking that I am not destined to make a film. Suddenly I got a call from Yashraj films to meet Aditya Chopra; I was surprised to hear it because I didn’t know anyone in the company. He offered me to do Mahi Way and I immediately agreed to do it. After that they offered me to sign a three films deal with them. I have made two films for them and it will get over once I will complete my third film. I am yet to lock a script for it.”

 Talking about collaborating with Ekta, she says, “Ekta Kapoor and I have been wanting to work with each other for a long time now. She had seen my work. We used to meet each other at least once in a year.  It was a film script actually which she sent me for Romil and Jugal.  My friend Anu Menon, who has done Waiting, wrote it for a film. It was her idea to make Romeo Juliet’s version with two boys. Ekta was very passionate about it. I told her I cannot make a film outside Yashraj, so she said let’s make it a web series. It felt like this is the perfect material for me and Ekta to come together.”

 Does she think it is a better option to make a film or show on digital platform these days? “It is a great new option, it is a different experience. I would have never been able to make this as a film because Censor Board would have banned it. I could have not shown it on TV. So on digital it is possible for us to show it. It was challenging to show a gay love story. I am a literature student and studied Shakespeare for many years. So for me to choose his famous play Romeo Juliet was a big challenge. He is the world’s biggest writer and his stories are so relevant today. We all know people who are gay. This is the right time to make it. The show needed that acceptance to come out and say yes we are gay. I could have easily been trivial about it or pretentious about it.  But i wanted to make it as mainstream love story. At the end of the day they are two human beings who are in love. I have spoken to my gay friends for making out scene, and ask them what the things they would say to each other are. They told me that it is lot like heterosexual people. I incorporated all that in my series.”

First published: 17 April 2017, 16:05 IST