Mumbai, May 6: Bengali megastar Prasenjit, veteran actor and TV presenter Farooque Shaikh and Kalki Koechlin have joined the cast of Dibakar Banerjee's latest directorial venture ‘Shanghai'.
Abhay Deol and Emraan Hashmi were already announced as the male leads of the political thriller, co-produced by PVR Pictures and Dibakar Banerjee Productions. Kalki will be paired opposite Emraan.
Dibakar said Kalki plays an intense and a very angry girl who has just come down from her university in America unlike her ‘Dev D' image.
“In ‘Shanghai', she is here because of some reason; she is also a woman with a past who is trying to come to terms with her life in a small town where she is not supposed to be at all.”
“She hates Emraan's character for trying to get her into some kind of a sleazy deal in a small town. Its almost as if they from are two different planets and when that happens anything can happen,” the filmmaker said.
Shaikh will portray a character unlike his usually positive on-screen persona. Dibakar said he had been wanting to cast the actor in a negative role for some time. He plays a very polished senior civil servant who is deciding the lives of millions of people.
Prasenjit will play Dr Ahmadi, a charismatic scholar, political and social activist. Dibakar said in Bollywood there aren't that many actors between the age of 40 and 50 who are playing their own ages on screen, yet exuding the kind of charisma and authority that was needed for this role.
Dibakar said he wanted someone a little unknown to the Hindi film audience and finally plumped for National Award winning Bengali megastar Prasenjit, who has also been exploring with the widest canvas of interesting roles possible in the last few years.
‘Shanghai' is an official Hindi adaptation of the political thriller that Greek novelist Vassilis Vassilikos wrote about a real political incident.
It has been adapted by Dibakar and his team to the Indian context and pulls absolutely no punches in its depiction of contemporary Indian realities. PTI