Raj and DK reveal Dulquer Salmaan was finalised for Guns & Gulaabs a week before filming began; had to ‘pull Gulshan Devaiah by teeth’

Raj and DK reveal Dulquer Salmaan was finalised for Guns & Gulaabs a week before filming began; had to ‘pull Gulshan Devaiah by teeth’

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Director duo Raj Nidimoru and Krishna DK, the hit-makers behind shows such as The Family Man and Farzi, debuted their new crime comedy, Guns & Gulaabs. The series, starring Rajkummar Rao, Dulquer Salmaan, Adarsh Gourav and Gulshan Devaiah, is streaming on Netflix. Raj and DK were particular about finding the correct actors for the show, which they described as a love letter to the ’90s.

Recently, the two directors sat down for indianexpress.com’s show Creator X Creator, and revealed intriguing details about how they finalised Rajkummar Rao, Dulquer Salmaan, Adarsh Gourav and Gulshan Devaiah for their characters Panna Tipu, Arjun Verma, Chhota Ganchi, and Atmaram, respectively.

They started off by talking about Rajkummar, the first actor they thought about when they decided to make the show. Raj shared, “Him for the role of Tipu was given, and that was kind of fixed because we knew what he could deliver. This was the second time we were working with him. We knew what we could do in Stree with him. I always told Raj that I always find (him) funny even in your serious roles. What I meant was, that there’s a certain excitement when you watch him even as a devilish character. There’s something that makes you smile, there are a few actors who are exciting to watch.”

DK added that Rajkummar brought an “extra dimension” to the role of Panna Tipu, just like Manoj Bajpayee did to his role in The Family Man and Shahid Kapoor and Vijay Sethupathi did in Farzi. “There are a lot of actors who do what needs to be done. They do a good job and when you watch it, you are like, ‘He was perfect for the role, he did a good job.’ Then there are some actors who bring an extra dimension, beyond what’s in the script. I can say that very easily about how Manoj Bajpayee get in Family Man, even Shahid (Kapoor) and Vijay Sethupathi did that in Farzi, and now I can say that about Rajkummar. He has also done that in Stree and I can see that happen even here. He has a very good grip on his character.”

The director recalled shooting the scene in which Tipu goes to Ganchi Junior and asks to be inducted into his gang. DK said that Rajkummar brought such an unexpected emotion to the scene that they were forced to rewrite future episodes to match his energy.

“He brought in just the right amount of emotion into it. It wasn’t calculated, it wasn’t planned. I was not expecting it, but he brought it into it. As soon as the take was over, I went to Raj and told him that this was not what I was expecting, but this was way more good, and I don’t want to change it. As soon as I came back, I remember calling Raj, and we started re-writing all the subsequent scenes that follow in the next couple of episodes to fall in line with this kind of emotion that he brought in,” shared DK.

Casting of Dulquer Salmaan
DK remembered how casting Dulquer Salmaan as Arjun Verma was a “fun thing”. The duo recalled how the actor was cast just a week before the show went on the floors.
Raj said, “He was an exciting idea for me,” and DK added, “We got him a little late in the game. We hadn’t planned for it originally. We had a North Indian character written in and we had approached an actor as well who had some kind of dates issue and it didn’t get resolved until the last minute.”

Raj shared how Dulquer was “sweet enough” to agree to be a part of the show. “We just had to do one phone call with him and explain his character to him. He didn’t even know the story, and he just jumped in. We were on the location, we were ready to shoot…”

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