Bollywood star Ajay Devgn, who plays a modern day 'Karna' in Prakash Jha's Mahabharata inspired magnum-opus 'Raajneeti', says he was initially reluctant to be a part of the multistarrer.
The film, which released today, is Jha's biggest project till date and boasts of a stellar star cast in Devgn, Naseeruddin Shah, Nana Patekar, Ranbir Kapoor, Katrina Kaif and Manoj Vajpayee.
Devgn, who has been a regular in Jha's previous films like 'Dil Kya Kare', 'Apaharan' and 'Gangajal', said he only decided to step in after Jha assured him that his presence in the film would be justified despite a crowd of actors.
"There are so many characters in the film. I was not sure whether Prakash really required me. This is why when he narrated the idea of 'Rajneeti' to me, I only had one question from him - 'Should I do this film?'. He said yes," Devgn told PTI.
"I again asked him whether he was really sure that he wanted me and he assured me that my presence would be justified. Once he confirmed twice, I didn't ask him any further questions; I was on for the film," Devgn added.
The 41-year-old actor said once he came on board to play the character of a firebrand Dalit leader, modelled on the 'Mahabharata's 'Karna', he left it on Jha to justify his character's presence in the movie.
"Once I came on board, it was entirely up to Jha to justify my presence in 'Rajneeti'. In any case, there is no hero or heroine in the film. Moreover, this is my fourth film with Jha and I understand his working style. We are friends before anything else and share a great rapport," the actor said.
In a year which has been laden with some high profile box office flops including 'Kites' (Hrithik Roshan), 'Veer' (Salman Khan) and 'Rann' (Amitabh Bachchan), 'Rajneeti' is one film which has a lot of expectations riding on it but Devgn says the film will not disappoint.
"As an actor you do feel elated when something like this happens because you have lived through the film and hence have a hands-on idea of how it has shaped up actually. This is why I am not scared of any expectations because I know that they would be met," he said.
Earlier this year, Devgn's 'Atithi Tum Kab Kaoge' turned out to be a surprise success at the box office and 'Raajneeti' has been creating quite buzz with its intriguing plotline about a political family fighting for power.
"Well, the film is far more commercial than last two films that I did with Jha - 'Gangaajal' and 'Apaharan'. 'Rajneeti' is a far bigger film with lot of drama and action.
"It is a sensible film and that would bring in classes. On the other hand masses would grab it too because of the 'masala' element in it. Moreover, youth would certainly be interested because today they are far more aware of all the politics today than before. This is the reason why we are looking at a universal audience here," Devgn said. PTI