Director Satram Ramani is in discussion these days about his film ‘Double XL’. He has seen his friend battling with this problem and his confidence is shattered by the taunts of the people. Not only this, just like a scene in his film, he has also had a special experience about the size of clothes with his wife in real life. The special thing is that like the main characters of this film, Sonakshi Sinha and Huma Qureshi have also heard the taunts of body shaming. In such a situation, he had a special conversation on how easy his real life experience made directing Satram Ramani, what kind of experiments were done in the film and what is his opinion about body shaming:
Huma-Sonakshi’s experience made the job easy
Double XL was made at the time when the era of Kovid was going on. The conditions were not good. Everyone in our team was multitasking. It became easy for me to make it because the heroines of the film had lived through things like body shaming. What happens is that the director sees the character in his own way through the script. Actors sometimes look at that character in a different way, but it really happened with Huma Qureshi and Sonakshi Sinha. He had seen those situations from the front, had faced them. People’s taunts were heard. In such a situation, it was easy for him to do these characters somewhere. The director’s job becomes easier when the actors have lived their characters in real life. Huma and Sonakshi also gave their suggestions during the shoot. However, she is such an actress whose suggestions were only around the point of view of the director and writer. When we used to talk, she would already come after doing homework. To be honest, it was more of a collective effort than his suggestions. He understood things like writing and direction point of view very well.
Mudassar Aziz had a hand in experimenting with songs
We experimented with songs. Some songs started from Tamil and then came to Hindi. This is the first time anyone has done this kind of experiment. A character in the story of the film is from South. We also started the songs with Tamil words to maintain that simplicity in the songs. We wanted that when the character wanted to express his feelings through songs, then in terms of Hindi film, he should not speak in Hindi but in Tamil. Every language of our country is beautiful and people accept it. The whole idea of this came out of writing itself, which we persevered. Simply put, the entire hand of writer Mudassar Aziz ji.
First the cast was decided, later the film was made
This is the first such film, in which the idea came after being inspired by the cast. Character from Idea. Story by character. Story from script. Then the script became a film. This process is a bit counterproductive. When this idea first came, it was very interesting because it is a global thought. Felt why we don’t think about those who are plus size. Actually, Huma, Sonakshi, Mudassar Bhai were having dinner somewhere after the lockdown. During that time Mudasjar ji came up with the idea and pitched it in front of Huma-Sonakshi. Both the actresses liked the idea very much and then the writing of the story started.
How did Shikhar Dhawan, Sonakshi and Huma come together in Double XL? Director Satram Ramani narrated the story
There is already a trend of giving messages through films.
I think that the trend of giving messages to the society through films is not from today but from long ago. Watch Raj Kapoor’s film. There was definitely some message in his films. ‘Satyam Shivam Sundaram’ is the best example of this. His films touched on many issues. Whether it is an individual, a human problem or a social issue. Talking about modern times, social issues are definitely touched in Rajkumar Hirani’s films. Yes, right now we are completely concentrating on issue based films. Where there is a problem of the people or of the whole society, the makers are bringing it in their story. I feel that if these issues are presented not just as a problem but with entertainment, then their reach can be more. In this, the audience gets a choice. If they don’t want to go with the message, they can go with the entertainment. So should more issue based films be made? On this he says that nothing can be forced. Yet they have a space where such problems are being addressed. There are thousands of such problems in our country, which people are facing everyday. If he comes through the film then people start connecting with him. The issue of our film is universal. Many people feel about body shaming. It is not even related to any country.
If Salman sir has a suitable script, I will go to him immediately.
On the question of directing Salman Khan after doing many films, Satram Ramani says that the day such a story comes to me, which I will be able to tell to Salman sir, then I will leave immediately. Just before that I should have a story like that. He is a big superstar. Who wouldn’t want to join them. When I worked with him, he treated me like family. As big a star as he is, he is also a person with a big heart. Whenever we used to shoot, he used to make sure that all the crew members should be happy. He is always ready to solve everyone’s problem. Whether the problem is small or big. Now what can you say with a bigger heart?
Huma Qureshi and Sonakshi Sinha arrived to promote ‘Double XL’, watch video
We should not break anyone’s confidence
I have seen a friend of my group listening to the taunts of body shaming. His weight increased within a year, so everyone started explaining to him. It was okay to explain to an extent but after that the comments started pouring in. No one understood his problem that what health issue he was struggling with. Somewhere my friend’s confidence started breaking down. I thought it was not correct. Our aim should not be to break anyone’s confidence. I also have an anecdote related to the film. We had a baby here a year ago. You know that there are weight gain issues in ladies post delivery. My wife took me to two or three big brands. There she liked the dress but was not of its size. The shop clearly said that we do not keep the size bigger than L. I experienced it after shooting. Our film also has Sonakshi’s induction where she is fighting that you don’t have clothes of my size. What happens when you go to the shop and do not get clothes of your size, then that thing starts creating a question in you. Then that question starts becoming a problem that your size is not right. You don’t fit the size of the world.