Shashank Khaitan: Realised Rannbhoomi needed a humongous budget

Director Shashank Khaitan had caught everyone’s attention when he had announced the epic war saga, Rannbhoomi, with Varun Dhawan in 2018. The movie was to mark the third outing of the actor-director duo who had delivered hits in Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania (2014) and Badrinath Ki Dulhania (2017). Soon after, the Karan Johar-production was put on the backburner.

While little was known about why it was shelved then, Khaitan finally reveals that the film’s staggering budget compelled the makers to do a rethink. “The film demanded world-class special effects and technology. As I started discussing with technicians, we realised that the budget was turning out to be humongous. It’s not easy [to recover costs] if you mount a big-budget movie. For every Baahubali that has done well, there are several other [expensive] movies that have not been successful. This puts a lot of pressure on the producers,” he says.

Even as he is creatively inclined, the three-film-old director keeps a sharp eye on the finances. “With such a large budget, I, as a director, had to be doubly sure that I am equipped to make the film. So, we unanimously decided to wait it out,” says Khaitan, who graduated to production with Good Newwz last year. As the film premieres on Zee Cinema on August 15, the filmmaker says, “Taking on the additional responsibility of a producer was a novel experience.”