“And why not? Films are meant to generate a mass reaction. No point in making a film with one of the biggest stars of the country which only a handful of people want to watch,” Priyadarshan told IANS.
He wants to make films for the masses. Even if it’s about the construction mafia “Khatta Meetha” with Akshay Kumar and Trisha or the stigma attached to inter-caste marriages in a film with Ajay Devgn, Bipasha Basu and Akshaye Khanna, he will speak in the language of the common man.
“De Dana Dan” is a big hit even in Pakistan where it’s running to packed houses in a theatre with shows from 9 a.m. to 2 a.m.
Priyan — as Priyadarshan is popularly known — says the romantic rain song with Akshay and Katrina which had been edited for reasons of length will be restored in the prints from Saturday.
“I’ve never made films for critics. I make my films, even my so-called artistic ones like ‘Kala Pani’ and ‘Kanchivaram’, for a mass audience. Today commercial success is more important for the survival of our film industry than ever before.
“Don’t critics want films to do well? Don’t they want the industry to make money so the movie business can get back on its feet? If audiences want to watch happy films who is going to stop them?”
Priyan says he’ll continue to make the films that connect with the audience.
“I’m a film buff. I understand world cinema. I know about Fellini, Ray and Godard. And Satyajit Ray is one of my favourite directors. But I also understand about the film market. We can’t make the films that audiences don’t come to see.”
Some of his hit movies include “Hera Pheri” (2000), “Garam Masala” (2005), “Bhagam Bhag” (2006) and “Bhool Bhulaiyya” (2007).
So what would Priyan’s future equation with his creativity be?
“Very simple. I will make the films I believe in. I’ve attained success in arthouse and mass cinema. I’ll make what comes naturally to me. Not the films that critics want me to make. I believe in every frame of ‘De Dana Dan’. If some critics haven’t liked it at least they should’ve the grace to admit the common man loves it. Say you don’t like. But don’t make up your mind for the masses, please!”
“I don’t claim to be a great filmmaker. But please take a long hard look at my body of work. Just see how many of my films have connected with the audience. Don’t dismiss ‘De Dana Dan’ just because it doesn’t match your sensibility.”