Filmmaker Vipul Shah donned the producer’s hat for the first time with the Amitabh Bachchan–Akshay Kumar starrer 2005 film Waqt: The Race Against Time. He recalls how the two superstars offered not to take remuneration for their work in the film, in order to support him. Shah recalls proposing the film to the two actors while they were working on his 2002 directorial venture “Aankhen”.
As “Waqt” clocks 16 years of release on Tuesday, Shah says: “While we were making Aankhen, I had discussed a play that was written and directed by Aatish Kapadia, with Amit sir (Bachchan) and Akshay (Kumar). They both loved the story and we decided to make this film.”
“When I informed Amitji and Akshay about me turning producer with this film, both of them were willing to waive off their fees, but my partner (on the film) Mr. Manmohan Shetty and I did not agree with it, and paid them their remuneration. But the fact that such big superstars stood by me and were even willing to waive off their fees, was a very touching and heartwarming gesture,” says the filmmaker.
Shah later went on to produce hits like “Force”, “Holiday: A Soldier Is Never Off Duty” And “Singh Is Kinng” among others.
He recalls the support he got from Manmohan Shetty. “Manmohan Shetty was the first person to support me and back me as a producer, and that was another wonderful relationship I developed that is as warm and wonderful even today. That’s how we how started work on ‘Waqt: The Race Against Time’ and my production banner Sunshine Pictures Private Limited was also set up. It will always be a very special film for me,” adds the filmmaker, who is currently co-directing the web show “Human” and producing the film “Sanak”.