Says, Akshay Kumar is the only person he could think of to portray the lead role in Raksha Bandhan. He enjoys watching Sooraj Barjatya’s films, and more family dramas are needed in the industry.
Since his directorial debut in 2007 with Strangers, Rai followed it up with Tanu Weds Manu, Raanjhana, Tanu Weds Manu Returns, Zero, and Atrangi Re. This director has been involved in his profession for 15 years, and is currently gearing up for what he refers to as his most important project yet- a movie with Akshay Kumar, who plays the lead in the upcoming Raksha Bandhan. “Back in 2007, a few people noticed my directing capabilities, but the journey actually started back in 1993-1994, when I first came to Mumbai. It has been a good 30 years of investing in stories, trying to convey what is in the heart, he said, adding further, It has been beautiful and I have been enjoying it. I have enjoyed my struggle, as those were the beautiful days of learning”.
Aanand would argue that the biggest thing she has learned over the past few years is honesty. He explains, “I have learned to be true to myself. To be honest with the stories I create. To not be distracted by numbers, but give my 100% to everything I work on. To learn from success and failure. To not shy away from coming back. That’s what I’ve learned. When I was working on my most difficult project yet, I came across the idea of Raksha Bandhan, an Indian tradition I did not know of until now. And while writing the pandemic, my partner and I found that no matter where we are, or who we are, the one thing that connects us all is family”.
Self-admitted fan of Rajshri Cinema, Aanand L Rai believes there is a shortage of family dramas in the Hindi Film Industry. “As a film fan, I remember watching Sooraj Barjatya movies. I watch them even today on TV, because the movies are just so lovely. We’re not watching movies like that anymore, it’s been a while. They should come out more often. Those kinds of movies have to be there at regular intervals” he says.
With a cast such as Akshay and T, Rai A’s believes that casting of Raksha Bandhan is a match made in heaven, very few actors are well suited for family dramas. “We wanted an actor who is naturally comfortable with themselves to take on a role as simply as this. Akshay sir and Salman bhai don’t have to prove anything to anybody, and that’s important for a film in this zone. For Rakshan Bandhan, it’s a very emotional, sensitive and selfless character, and I think nobody, but Akshay sir was right for it. He smiles”.
In conclusion, Rai explains that Indian filmmakers have advanced and are continually growing with the times, but Indian film audiences have a ways to go. he says, “I’ve got to evolve my audience along with me and I learned a lot while making Raksha Bandhan and now, I need to see if I’m able to communicate that to my audience. The reason why this genre took a backseat is because we got evolved but we didn’t take our audience along with us”.
The film Raksha Bandhan is slated to release on the 11th of August”.