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EXCLUSIVE! Paragg Mehta casting the spell on film casts

Mumbai (Maharashtra): The magic that a film creates on-screen hugely depends on the chemistry and camaraderie between actors. But it is the casting director that manifests this talent even before it is seen on the camera. Paragg Mehta, one such alchemist of Bollywood has shown his magical skills with the perfectly casted ‘Janhit Mein Jaari’. The casting director sat down with First India to talk about Janhit Mein Jaari, the casting couch and more.

Paragg trusted newbie Anud Singh Dhaka and cast him as the male lead beside an established actress, Nushrratt Bharuccha. Talking about him Paragg said, “Casting Anud was an interesting process. We had auditioned so many actors for the role but they all were missing something or the other that we were looking for. I felt that Anud is the guy because of his honesty, energy and comic timing. My belief in him as an actor was also very strong.”

He further thanked everyone who recognize and appreciate the hard work that is done behind the screen stating that it was ‘due time’ and he appreciates the immense praise he is receiving for the casting of Janhit Mein Jaari.

Paragg believes that strong beliefs never hamper work. “Before RamLeela, Supriya Pathak was famously known for Khichdi. Her image as the comical Hansa was so strong that it was very difficult to cast her in the dominating role of Baa. So, you really have to believe in your vision and persuade everyone else to trust your creative process,” he revealed.

Joking about being a part of the team that gave Bollywood’s cutest couple, Ranveer and Deepika, Paragg said, “The credit of course goes to Sanjay Leela Bhansali Sir. We got Sharad Kelkar his first major role after television and also got Gulshan Devaiah and Richa Chaddha on board. But Deepika and Ranveer, it was all Sanjay sir. He will kill me if I take the credit!”

Talking about the controversial topic of the casting couch, Paragg said, “In the film industry, people keep talking about it, but not everyone is involved in it. So many genuine people seek nothing but talent. I won’t say that it does not exist, it does. I won’t deny that fact. I just feel that a person always has a choice and you have to say ‘no’ no matter what. You have to let go of the fear of any repercussions. You will get the work through your hard work talent, no matter what.”

He also spoke about the nepotism debate, stating, “Nepotism kahan nahi hota? But so many actors have come up on their own. The biggest star right now is Kartik Aaryan. He worked so hard and gave so many auditions. It is now that he is getting his due credit. SRK became a legend. Nushrratt Bharuccha worked so hard and now she is carrying a film on her shoulder. I don’t think nepotism steals opportunities. I believe that hard work with honesty decides your destiny.”

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