With Madhuri Dixit playing the new femme fatale, director Abhishek Chaubey is back to exploring love and deceit in 'Dedh Ishqiya', a sequel to his 2010 hit 'Ishqiya', which he says is much more complex than the original.
"The one thing that attracted me to the story is that we were creating an alternate world in 'Dedh Ishqiya'. Unlike the original, which was rooted in reality, this film is a flight of fancy. We have created this world through the character of begum Para (Madhuri) who is extremely desirable, beautiful, cultured and sophisticate but yet there is a mystery to her.
"The setting is inspired by the culture of Awadh. It was decadent but had lot of music, poetry and colour. Something beautiful died with its decline. We have tried to merge that culture with very modern sensibilities," the director said.
Chaubey made an impressive debut with the 2010 'Ishqiya', about a lovelorn but vengeful woman, played deftly by Vidya Balan, who uses two runaway thieves to settle scores.
Given the success of the first film, Chaubey embarked on the sequel with some trepidation but his producer and collaborator Vishal Bhardwaj, keen to bring the story back, finally convinced him.
"Vishal wanted me to make a sequel but I did not have a story. He got an author onboard, who came with the basic idea that became 'Dedh Ishqiya'. I was still not sure but somewhere in the process, I started loving what I was doing. Now, I can say that this film came to be not because I wanted to make a sequel but because it has something to say." 'Dedh Ishqiya' is slated to hit the screens on January 10, 2014.