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Wrote Dial 100 script in six days, says Rensil D'Silva

Starring Manoj Bajpayee, Neena Gupta and Sakshi Tanwar, the thriller will be released on Zee5 on 6 August. 

Shriram Iyengar

Director Rensil D'Silva said the script of his latest thriller, Dial 100, was the product of his fastest writing endeavour. Starring Manoj Bajpayee, Sakshi Tanwar and Neena Gupta, the film takes place over one night. At the trailer launch, the director spoke about how the concept came to him several years ago. The film will be streamed on Zee5 from 6 August. 

Describing the incident, D'Silva reminisced that he was at a party with friends, when he noticed some of them were on a phone call. The filmmaker found a distressed writer on the other end. He said, " I took the phone — and I remember this vividly — and started talking to this guy. He was drunk and trying to get into this ad agency, and no one was giving him the time of the day. I asked him, 'What do you want?' But he was angry about not being heard and was in no mood to listen to me. I told him, 'Why don't you come to meet me?' He said, 'I am burning my work.' I tried talking him off, but he replied, 'When the last paper burns, I am going to jump'."

The filmmaker said the exchange was chilling. "I don't know if he was drunk, or bluffing, or really planning to jump. But I remember what I felt. Words fail you when someone at the other end speaks like this on the edge," he said.

The phone call set the tone for Dial 100, which marks D'Silva's return to the director's chair after six years. The filmmaker wrote the script over 6 days in one go. He said, "This stayed with me, and I thought this was a great premise for a series or a film. There cannot be more drama than a phone call, with someone telling the person on the other side not to jump off the edge. It was the fastest screenplay I wrote, in six-seven days."

Dial 100 is centred on a police officer, Nikhil Sood (Manoj Bajpayee), who receives a phone call at the emergency control room.

Bajpayee hailed the script as fantastic. "I remember I was home, after three months in Uttarakhand. Siddharth Malhotra sent me this script, and I read it one go. That's how we started making the film," he said.

Sakshi Tanwar, who plays Sood's wife, said that she didn't think twice about agreeing to do the film because of the great cast. She said, "I never had anything to think about. Where else do you have the opportunity to work with Neenaji, Manoj Sir, Rensil Sir."

Actress Neena Gupta, who will be seen in a deadly role, said, "People are writing different scripts for women my age as well. There are solid roles coming in which were not possible before. We are lucky to be in this time because there are interesting roles coming up." 

Dial 100 is being backed by Sony Pictures Entertainment. 

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