Sunny Deol had tears in his eyes, says Gadar 2 director Anil Sharma

- August 10, 2023
| By : Santosh Mehta |

The making of Gadar 2, sequel of much-loved Gadar: Ek Prem Katha, was an emotional ride for its makers and actors alike. With the film about to be released, the audience too is on the edges of their seats

THE CREATORS: (from left) Anil Sharma, Utkarsh Sharma, Ameesha Patel, Sunny Deol, and Simrat Kaur at trailer launch for Gadar 2 PHOTO: GETTY

When director Anil Sharma narrated the story of Gadar 2 to Sunny Deol, the actor got emotional, remembering the success that Gadar: Ek Prem Katha has received. Over the years after its release, Gadar saw the kind of appreciation among Indian masses that only a few movies have enjoyed. 

“He [Deol] got so emotional that there were tears in his eyes,” Anil told Patriot in an interview. “Deol’s first reaction was ‘Gadar itni badhi film aur uski ek legacy hai (Gadar was a huge hit and it has its legacy). Now the whole country wants Gadar 2 and we should listen to them’,” he said.

Deol certainly believes that acting is more than just muscles and looks, and he has proven it with his wonderful performances over the years. “Acting has to come from within. One cannot be an actor just by building a body, you need emotions to evoke emotions in your audience,” Deol says.

Deol is nonchalant, sitting on a stage at Jagran Film Festival at Siri Fort auditorium, and much of the questions by fans in the audience culminate in “Sab Rab kara deta hai (God solves everything)”

FOR THE AUDIENCE: Ameesha Patel and Sunny Deol in Jaipur for the film promotion

Gadar: Ek Prem Katha, the prequel of Gadar 2, to be released on 11 August this year, became a cult classic among the Indian masses. Its catchy dialogues, and remarkable performance by Ameesha Patel and Deol as lead actors, turned it into an iconic status of popular culture in the early 2000s that still continues to be celebrated.

Now, as the highly anticipated sequel, Gadar 2, is in the works, the excitement within the audience is palpable. The prospect of revisiting the Gadar of the 2000s – its emotions, action, and entertainment, as Deol puts it – has kept the audience on the edge of their seats. So much so that multiplexes have sold over 76,600 tickets so far, and the film is yet to be released!

“It’s a sequel to Gadar: Ek Prem Katha. Besides being a hit at the box office, the film had received critically-acclaimed reviews and my audience still remembers it. I am taking the story forward and have even casted the same actors. Utkarsh Sharma acted as a child artist in the prequel, so I have given him the role of an adult this time,” Anil said. The film stars Ameesha Patel and Sunny Deol in the leading roles, much like its prequel.

Shot in one and a half years with a Rs 100 crore budget, the film is set against the Indo-Pakistan war of 1971, in which Tara Singh, played by Deol, travels back to Pakistan on a personal mission to save his son Charanjeet “Jeete” Singh, played by Utkarsh, who is imprisoned and tortured by the Pakistan soldiers under Major General Hamid Iqbal (Manish Wadhwa). Ameesha Patel played the character of Sakeena, Tara Singh’s wife.

In a way, the sequel of Gadar could be seen as a revisiting of India’s beloved characters in cinema, comprising Tara Singh, Sakeena, and Jeete – with Tara  Singh stealing the limelight. Anil is sure that the audience will love Deol’s character once again. “I can say that Tara Singh is not just a character but the emotions of millions of people around the world who love India or their own country,” he says.

AT A GLANCE: Official poster of Gadar 2

The shooting is done all over India. To name a few famous places, I have shot in Punjab, Chandigarh, Mumbai, Ahmadnagar and Lucknow among others,” Anil shares. “We are also focusing on the promotion of the film. The promotion is done majorly in Jaipur and Ghaziabad, and almost 50,000 people saw its trailer with us in an event. There was huge appreciation from the audience in Delhi too.”

Anil adds that he and Deol were particularly excited about including the song Main nikla gaddi leke in the sequel too, as the song has a special place in the hearts of the film’s fans and, therefore, they remodelled the song for Gadar 2. It’s an overwhelming feeling, he says.

A lot is also taken into consideration while shooting the action scene, one of the selling points of the film. Anil wants to uphold the legacy of the Indian action films and called it the golden era of Indian cinema. “As a director I have opted for an authentic approach to fight scenes over VFX for the film. I think the action scenes in the old days were very original and I am committed to bring the same kind of authenticity,” he says.

IN TEARS: Sunny Deol got emotional on the launch of Gadar 2 trailer PHOTO: GETTY

Anil began his career as a director in the 1980s and gained recognition for his work in the action and drama genres. He is known for crafting films that combine elements of patriotism, family values, and larger-than-life storytelling. His filmography showcases his diverse range as a filmmaker, including historical narratives. While films like Apne shows his flair for drama movies, Tahalka highlights his talents in directing action adventures.

He is also known for bringing powerhouse actors together. In Apne (2007), he brought together Dharmendra and his real-life sons, Sunny Deol and Bobby Deol, with whom he has done multiple films. Audiences also remember him for the explosive cast in Ab Tumhare Hawale Watan Saathiyo.

From the heart of Amritsar to the glamour of Bollywood, Anil has carved a niche as a dynamic Indian film director, screenwriter, and producer. But he keeps his heart with the audience and the places he visits. “I love my audience and whenever I visit Delhi, I feel the pleasure of meeting many interesting people there; Delhi instantly becomes my favorite place,” he smiles.