Ranbir Kapoor remembers Rishi Kapoor at Brahmastra event

‘I remember during the making of the film, my father kept questioning Ayan Mukerji and me, ‘Who takes so long to make a film? Who spends so much money?’ But I believe he is here somewhere, and I hope he is smiling,’ says Ranbir Kapoor.

Actor Ranbir Kapoor on Wednesday paid tributes to his late father Rishi Kapoor during the motion poster launch of his latest film Brahmastra, saying he hopes to make the veteran actor proud when the long-in-the-works movie is released next year.

The much-awaited big-budget fantasy adventure epic, which is envisioned as a trilogy, features Ranbir as Shiva, a man with supernatural powers. Written and directed by Ayan Mukerji, Brahmastra is billed as one of the biggest films to come out of the country.

At the fan launch event of the film in New Delhi, Ranbir got emotional, and recalled the conversations he had with his late father about the film, which was in the making for eight years. Rishi Kapoor passed away in 2020.

“I miss my father terribly today. I remember during the making of the film, he kept fighting with Ayan and me, and kept questioning us. ‘What are you doing? Who takes so long to make a film? Who spends so much money? Ranbir, you are not making a penny on this film. Who will watch a VFX film in the country?,” Ranbir said.

The 39-year-old actor also asked the audience to join in as he paid tributes to the late star, and sang a few lines of the actor’s popular song ‘Om Shanti Om’ from the 1980 romantic thriller Karz. “Kya tumne kabhi kisi se pyaar kiya? Kabhi kisi ko dil diya? Maine bhi diya,” the Tamasha actor said as the fans joined him.

Ranbir then said that if one were to talk about “heart and love,” he had to call his Brahmastra co-star Alia Bhatt, his girlfriend, on the stage.

Bhatt, who was joined by Mukerji at the event, said she got emotional hearing Ranbir Kapoor speak about his father. “I am sorry but right now I am a little emotional because of what you said. I immediately started to…” Bhatt said, fighting back tears as Ranbir patted her back.

The one-minute motion poster teased the world of Brahmastra, with Ranbir’s Shiva showcasing his supernatural power — that of fire. The video, which also features the voiceover of Bhatt, and foreshadows a life-changing event on Earth, ends with Ranbir standing tall with a trident of fire against the backdrop of a giant statue of Lord Shiva.

Bhatt, who plays Isha in the film, said it was a “big day” for the team of the film as they finally unveiled the motion poster to the fans. The film was announced in 2014 with a scheduled release in 2016, but got delayed. It eventually went into production in 2018. Several release date changes, and one nationwide lockdown later, Brahmastra is finally set to release on 9 September, 2022. “This has been such a long journey. It is a big day for us. I am shaking,” Bhatt, 28, said.

Backed by filmmaker Karan Johar, Brahmastra also features megastar Amitabh Bachchan and Nagarjuna.

Mukherji said he has worked extremely hard for a decade to create a unique and never-seen-before world in Brahmastra. The 38-year-old director, who has been working on Brahmastra for 10 years, revealed that the idea for the movie started taking shape while he was making Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (2013), also starring Ranbir.

“In the last 10 years, me and my entire team have worked immensely hard to make this film. We really wanted to create something mind-blowing, unique, never-before-seen. We have worked so hard to make a film so that eventually, audiences like our film, which is why we wanted to launch the first thing of Brahmastra with the audience,” Mukerji, who made his debut in 2009 with the Kapoor-starrer Wake Up Sid, said at the event.

Brahmastra features Kapoor as Shiva, a man born with special powers; Bhatt as Isha, his love interest, and Bachchan as his mentor.

The film was initially titled ‘Dragon,’ and the filmmaker said the team changed the name to Brahmastra as it was a more appropriate choice. “I don’t know how this (news) got out, maybe I had mentioned it once on social media. Actually when ‘Dragon’ was the title of the film, that time, we had not thought about it. Shiva, in the film, has the power of fire so I wrote the name ‘Dragon’ on the script. But the film was always rooted, and inspired by Indian culture and history. So when the time came to give the title, Brahmastra was always the right title for the film,” he added. Mukerji quipped ‘Dragon’ would have been an apt choice if the film were made in China.

“It is a very important day for us. Today is the day when we open the doors of Brahmastra to people everywhere,” he added.

Also starring Mouni Roy, Brahmastra will be released on 9 September next year in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, and Malayalam. The film is produced by Fox Star Studios, Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions, Prime Focus, and Starlight Pictures.

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