After bringing some heart-warming stories of love and longing from New York, Modern Love has shifted its focus to India’s Maximum City. Amazon Prime Video is set to launch the anthology set in Mumbai, Chennai and Hyderabad, with Modern Love Mumbai set to release today. Scam 1992 star Pratik Gandhi is all set to play the lead in Baai, a part of this anthology.
Directed by Hansal Mehta, the film will see him play a closeted gay man, trying hard to convey his truth to his grandmother, who he lovingly calls Baai. While senior actor Tanuja will essay the titular role, chef Ranveer Brar makes his acting debut with the episode.
In a conversation with indianexpress.com, Pratik called Bai a ‘delicate story’ about love without any restrictions. Having played some very intense roles in the past, many were surprised to see the trailer that sees the actor in a very different light. “That’s the fun part. As an actor, we want to experiment. Also, I enjoy expressing complex human emotions. We don’t get such roles often and the idea of breaking the barriers in the audience’s mind was so exciting. The perception that I have, no one really expected me in this kind of a role.”
For many, the title hints at the lead’s sexual orientation, but Pratik stays mum, saying it’s ‘open to interpretation’. The actor though shared that the team was clear that they will present a very realistic story. “If I can put in simple words, we want the story to be gender agnostic. The love should be felt even when you remove the gender from the story. We have worked hard on it and hope that comes across,” he said with a smile.
Describing working with Hansal Mehta again as a ‘dream’, the actor said he felt like he was coming back home. “I never felt the pressure, and it was a smooth ride with him.” Talking about his experience working with Tanuja, Pratik said, “She is what charisma is described as. She just lights up the screen. The first scene that we had together, we had to go up almost four flights of stairs. The building was without a lift and quite old, with steep stairs. I thought she must have got tired but as the camera started rolling, her energy level was on a different high. I just couldn’t take my eyes off her.”
Further talking about love in modern times, Pratik Gandhi said that even if it’s the simplest emotion, a lot of complications have been constructed around it. “Now, if we get love easily, we question it, feeling there’s something wrong with it.” While every youngster in the country grows up idolising Bollywood romance, the actor had a different take when asked to pick his favourite love story. “Honestly, I didn’t see too many films while growing up. It might sound boring but I have always idolised Radha-Krishna’s love story. For me, they were the ideal couple.”
As for the most romantic thing he’s done in life, The Great Indian Murder actor sheepishly quipped, “I chased her (his wife) for more than two years before she said yes.”
Staring May 13, Modern Love Mumbai will stream on Amazon Prime Video.