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Here's why filmmaker Shree Narayan Singh is grateful to Shahid Kapoor

Earlier this year, the filmmaker was left in a quandry when the shoot of his film, Batti Gul Meter Chalu, was suddenly halted owing to a dispute between co-producers KriArj Entertainment and T-Series.

Photo: Facebook/Shree Narayan Singh

Mayur Lookhar

Director Shree Narayan Singh wrapped up the shoot of Batti Gul Meter Chalu with the 'Hard Hard' song. More than joy, the accomplishment brings a sigh of relief from the filmmaker.  

Early this year, the film's shooting was stalled due to a dispute between co-producers KriArj Entertainment and T-Series. Few months later, T-Series took sole control of the film and KriArj Entertainment was no longer associated with the project.

“It’s a big relief. I was really tensed that film might get shelved. This film is very dear to me. I will never forget that two and a half months period of struggle. We had finished 65-70% of my film. And the problems happened. I’d been fine if we had shot for just 7-8 days, then we encountered such troubles. We had finished shooting for 35-40 days,” Singh told Cinestaan.com.  

When the time to commnece the shoot came, lead actors, Shahid Kapoor, Shraddha Kapoor and Yami Gautam, were no longer available owing to other commitments. To complete this film, Kapoor decided to shift the shoot of his next film, Arjun Reddy, ahead by a couple of months.

“Shahid is like brother, friend. All of us got emotionally attached to the film. People felt that the film was coming out nicely. I was hurt when the shooting got stalled. Thankfully, Bhushan Kumar [head of T-Series] came and help us out. Shahid Kapoor didn’t have the dates, as he was committed to doing Arjun Reddy. I thank him that he agreed to shift that film by two and a half months for us. He waited during the tough phase, didn’t start any new project, and even potponed his vacation with family. I’m relieved that we’ve managed to complete the film after experiencing the ups and downs,” Singh said.

While Singh feels relieved, has the trouble with Batti Gul Meter Chalu impacted his relationship with Prernaa Arora, co-founder of KriArj Entertainment?  

Singh was the editor of KriArj Entertainment’s maiden film, Rustom (2016). He also made his directorial debut with another KriArj Enetertainment project, Toilet: Ek Prem Katha (2017). Singh said he was only part of the creative aspect of the film and has no idea how the settlement was reached.

“It is unfortunate whatever happened. I was only handling the creative part. The only information I received [from Prernaa Arora] was that I’m handling it and you should just focus on the creative part. I don’t know how the settlement happened. I was just glad to receive news of the film starting over again," said the director.

When asked again if his relation with Arora has been strained, Singh replied, “Look, no one desires that their film comes to a halt. It is unfortunate. Their intention was noble. The situation was such that one thread got loose and untied the rest. [However], it is a matter of the past.”   

Has he spoken Arora after KriArj Entertainment exited Batti Gul Meter Chalu?

“Honestly, I have been so busy with the shoot. We were under pressure to complete it in time for the actor couldn’t delay their next projects further. Kapoor needs to grow a thick beard for Arjun Reddy. Yami Gautam, too, has commuted to Uri. So, we had to finish quickly,” he replied.

The film was initially scheduled to hit the screens on 31 August. Though it looks like the deadline will not be met, Singh is still hopeful.

“I’m still trying for that. I’m rushing for that. That’s why I’ve had no time for anything other than edit. We didn’t imagine to encounter trouble, and accordingly we had chosen 31 August as the release date. Let’s see what happens,” concluded Singh.