These days, you might know Ram Gopal Varma as the old pervert on Twitter. Then, you see his name alongside Amitabh Bachchan‘s name on the poster or in the trailer of ‘Sarkar 3’, such a big contrast. It might be hard to believe that there was a time when Ram Gopal Varma was one of the most sought after directors in India. He was supposed to be the director that could make any actor’s career. We remember Abhishek Bachchan was going through his series of flops when he was signed on by Ramu for ‘Naach’, a film that also starred Antara Mali and Riteish Deshmukh. An old man said that now Abhishek will finally get the hit that he has been waiting for. But alas, it was Ramu that got hit and that too badly when ‘Naach’ turned out to be a huge flop. He has given 17 flops after ‘Naach’. Who keeps funding his films? Because we remember vividly that there was an article sometime back that said he owned people money. So how is he still making movies?
Ram Gopal Varma and his obsession with actresses
It’s sad that Ram Gopal Varma has come to the creepy old man that he is today. He was the director, who made some of the greatest and timeless movies of Indian cinema. He has worked with the best of actors, from Amitabh Bachchan to Aamir Khan. There’s a huge chance his mind got messed up when he started obsessing over his heroines. After ‘Rangeela’, he made a gazillion films with Urmila Matondkar. Some of these films looked like they were made so just to give Urmila something to do and keep her only to himself.
I was mesmerised by Urmila’s beauty — from her face to her figure… everything about her was just divine. She had done a few films before Rangeela, which hadn’t done well and she hadn’t made much of an impact on the audience either.
Then, after Rangeela, she became the nation’s sex symbol. That doesn’t mean it was I who made her look beautiful. I would say that she was a painting and I simply framed her.
Apart from the frame, for a painting to be truly relished, it also needs the right place for it to be displayed in, and that place was Rangeela.
One of my primary motives in making Rangeela was to capture Urmila’s beauty eternally on camera and to make it a benchmark for sex symbols. I would say that I have never felt more of a cinematic high than when I watched her through my camera on the sets of Rangeela.
I don’t know how this may sound, but my biggest problem with Urmila on a personal front was that I just couldn’t accept her being an ordinary human being.
I know that is a very unrealistic expectation from any woman, but then you have to understand that I am a very filmy person. She was, in person, a simple sweetheart, but I very selfishly always wanted her to be larger than life even in real life. – RGV
After he got over his infatuation with Urmila, he started focusing on Antara Mali. Like Urmila, Antara too was a good actress, but it seemed that Ramu was only making movies for these actresses to keep them with him. He also tried to make an Urmila out of Antara.
I was intrigued by the intense realism I saw in Antara Mali’s face while shooting Mast and I thought that would work very well for her role in Company, which it did.
But the biggest blunder I made with regard to Antara, cinematically speaking, was trying to make an Urmila out of her in Naach. Everyone is unique, and the problem occurs when they are portrayed in ways that don’t bring out their natural selves.
I believe that Naach would have been an entirely different film had I made it in a way that showcased Antara’s natural perfection. – RGV
After that, it was a bunch of other ladies (Nisha Kothari and Jiah Khan) and then somehow, Ramu started venturing into films that were not considered decent anymore. Not the kinds of films that you can watch with your family. His move in that direction is similar to the Bhatts move into these types of movies. Coincidently, both were known to make good films before the drastic change of making cheap films happened. Ramu had his ladies while the Bhatts had their kissing king, Emraan Hashmi.
Perhaps, Ramu’s journey would have been different if he wasn’t so focused on trying to create the next masterpiece and obsessing so much about his heroines. Speaking of his heroines, isn’t it strange how the actresses he was obsessed about are no longer working in films or still relevant? It’s like they were so disgusted with the film industry that they just prefer to have a quiet life. It’s strange considering how most of them were crazy about being an actress, especially Antara; she was just something else.
Over the years, the media has linked me with many women, partly because I have a tendency to cast some of them again and again in my films. But then I work again and again with many male actors and technicians too. But I guess since women make more interesting copy, the media always focuses only on that aspect of my interactions. Having said that, I have to admit that some of the media speculations are true and some untrue… but, out of respect for the privacy of my heroines, I am not going to specify which ones are true and which are not. – RGV
Some of his films, despite their fate at the box office, had really great music. ‘Rangeela’, ‘Daud’, ‘Road’ and many more. We cannot end this post without mentioning how Ramu was also the mentor of many other great directors, including Shimit Amin and Anurag Kashyap.
List of Flops from Ram Gopal Varma
1. Raat (Flop)
2. Drohi (Disaster)
3. Daud (Flop)
4. Mast (Flop)
5. Naach (Disaster)
6. Shiva (Disaster)
7. Nishabd (Flop)
8. Ram Gopal Verma Ki Aag (Disaster)
9. Darling (Disaster)
10. Contract (Flop)
11. Agyaat (Flop)
12. Rann (Disaster)
13. Rakht Charitra (Flop)
14. Rakht Charitra (Disaster)
15. Not A Love Story (Flop)
16. Department (Disaster)
17. Bhoot Returns (Flop)
18. The Attacks Of 26/11 (Flop)
19. Satya 2 (Disaster)
20. Veerapan (Disaster)
21. Sarkar 3 (Disaster)