The star cast of Fukrey Returns had expected the film to click with the audience but they are surprised with the large box-office collection that it has already garnered
The Fukreys are back on screen. The sequel of the 2013 hit released on December 8 and the star cast is going all out to promote it. On Saturday, December 9, Richa Chadha, Varun Sharma, Pulkit Samrat and Manjot Singh visited Sakal Times’ event Schoolympics and couldn’t hide their excitement over the box-office collection of their film.
Fukrey Returns has collected around Rs 31 crores since its release and the team is feeling buoyant because their efforts have paid off. “We are so happy. We have got such an amazing opening,” said Manjot with Richa adding, “We had not expected such big numbers. We were confident that the film would do well but not so big.”
Prior to the film’s release, Pulkit said that he and the others were anxious and unable to sleep. “Now, we won’t be able to sleep because of the celebrations,” said he adding. “Every Friday is a gamble. That said, we put in a lot of hard work while making a film. However, eventually it’s up to the audience to like or not like a film. But our film is getting so much love; today morning there was 35 to 40 per cent growth. The word-of-mouth publicity is superbly strong, which is a big win for us.”
Directed by Mrigdeep Singh Lamba, the film has been produced by Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani.
We asked Pulkit how much have the characters of Bholi Punjaban, Choocha, Hunny, Lali and Zafar evolved in the sequel and he replied, “We continue doing ‘fukreypanti’. However, Bholi’s character has more shades and the graph is interesting.”
Without divulging much Richa said, “You will get to know more about it when you watch the film. Having said that, our director Mrigdeep has paid a tribute to the fans of the first part, which had received a tremendous response in Delhi and Punjab. In fact, it was re-released in Delhi because of its popularity. As the TV channels kept screening the film, the characters became a household name. It was our responsibility to take the film a notch higher but maintain the consistency of the characters.”
The four characters are back with newer situations and the mess they create is much bigger and bizarre. “Bholi is back as a wounded tigress and she is torturing us even more,” said Manjot with Richa fiercely defending her character by saying, “Revenge is necessary. Because of them I was jailed, so I had to torture them.”
But they make sure that the gags, situations and nuances of the characters do not look repetitive? “That’s the director’s job, we just had to react to the situations,” said Pulkit, to which Richa added, “In a sequel, most of the jokes are self-referential which means that they will take you back to the first part.”
But what exactly makes Fukrey such a delightful watch? The fact that it’s not just slapstick comedy. It’s much more. “It’s a slice-of-life kind of comedy where the situations are funny. None of us do any kind of comedy but the characters are humorous, and they have their own strengths and weaknesses. You will find such kind of characters in daily life, especially in Delhi. When you pick up stuff from real life, the execution is important. When that happens, the audience associates with the characters even more. Each one of us is a ‘fukra’ one way or the other,” Pulkit said.
“It’s not that kind of film where you have to leave your brain at home because it’s not a masala entertainer,” said Richa adding, “People are connecting with the film because it’s not making fun of anybody, it’s not objectifying women or showing them in bad light, there are no crass jokes. It’s basically a clean film.”
The chemistry between the characters is strong even though we see them on screen after five years. “That’s because we had taken efforts to keep in touch with each other over the years. We had started our careers almost around the same time. We are not friends but family. The bond was always there but getting back on the set has strengthened it further,” said Varun.
Richa said that they support and defend each other. “Films are not something that can be made in isolation,” she quipped.
Comedy is about spontaneity. The right reaction is very necessary, which happens a lot in Fukery. So then did the reactions happen during the workshops or were they impromptu?
“Workshops are more to break the ice and it happened during the first film. In the second part, we had to come back and spend time together as characters. After one or two days, we were sorted. As far as reactions are concerned, we have known each other for so long that we know how the person will react. Even if they surprise you, which happens a lot of time, it’s still very interesting. It’s like a badminton match,” said Pulkit.