Ranbir Kapoor and Vani Kapoor to star in the axe-wielding larger-than-life film Shamshera. Image: Shamshera/Yash Raj Films

The latest Yash Raj Films’ action spectacle Shamshera, is said to be one of the most expensive Hindi films, starring superstar Ranbir Kapoor, Sanjay Dutt and Vaani Kapoor, which is scheduled for theatrical release in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu on 22 July 2022.

The high-octane, adrenaline-pumping entertainer is set in the 1800s in the heartland of India, as the story follows a dacoit tribe and their fight for independence against British rule.

It has the big promise of a never-before-seen Ranbir Kapoor, who took on a physical transformation to take on the double role of Shamshera and Balli in the period action film.

The film is highly anticipated because it marks Ranbir’s return to the cinemas after four years since Sanju’s release, post his marriage to Alia Bhatt, and is timely, as it comes as India celebrates 75 years of independence from British rule.

Vaani and Ranbir are one of the freshest on-screen pairings in recent years and Ranbir showers heaps of praise on his co-star for delivering a powerful performance in Shamshera in which she plays India’s most sought-after travelling performer from the 1800s.

Sanjay Dutt, who plays Ranbir’s archenemy in this huge casting coup, is cast as an antagonist and his showdown with Ranbir will be something to watch out for as they ferociously go after each other with no mercy.

Dutt is certainly looking his deadliest best playing an evil, merciless, cold-hearted brute force of nature, Shuddh Singh who is all set for the clash of the year with Shamshera

The story of Shamshera is set in the fictitious city of Kaza, where a warrior tribe is imprisoned, enslaved and tortured by a ruthless authoritarian general Shuddh Singh.

Exploring the story of a man named Shamshera, who became a slave, a slave who became a leader and then a legend for his tribe, as he relentlessly fights for his tribe’s freedom and dignity.

In relation to the upcoming period action film, the director of the film Karan Malhotra said:

“Shamshera is the biggest film that I have done so far. The world of ‘Shamshera’ is unlike ‘Agneepath’ or ‘Brothers’. It is much bigger than that. Shamshera was a more liberating and less burdening process to create a world of mine.

“It was also the most daunting film for us because we had humongous sets and big crowds. We had no reference point, we had to build the world from scratch”.

On directing Ranbir Kapoor in the double role, he explains it was a “very new and an enriching experience as he is a new-age actor. He is an actor who internalises a lot, you see that in all of his performances. He is not a loud actor, he is not out there, but my cinema is exactly that”.

Referring to Ranbir as “not a usual suspect for a film like this”, the director added, “He has really worked hard in imbibing my sensibilities into his performance and giving it his best”.

Karan Malhotra also shared that Ranbir and Sanjay shared a sense of camaraderie on set and bringing the two together was easy for him, saying “They were thorough professionals without trying to interfere with each other’s private space as performers”.

Ranbir Kapoor who makes his double role debut by playing the two characters of Shamshera and Balli, describes the film as an “action bonanza set in the 1800s” and “an adventure, like an amusement park with thrills, and a great story and character”.

He says “When the film was narrated to me, it wasn’t really offered to me as a double role. But when I heard the story, my immediate response to Aditya Chopra and Karan Malhotra was to let me play the father also because it is such a great role, and it is such an interesting, juicy part for an actor to play.

“Then, I really had to convince Adi and Karan. I think after that Karan did a couple of look tests and that’s when he got convinced”.

“They were two unique characters and for an actor like me, to play two distinctive characters and make them different was very challenging and very exciting for me”.

Ranbir, who underwent a physical transformation to fulfil this role, says “Physically, this film has been, by far, the toughest film for me because I am a very thin guy; that’s my genetic build.

“So, losing weight is very easy for me but putting it on is harder. Director Karan Malhotra wanted a worker’s body. This guy, Shamshera, had spent some serious time in jail. He practically grew in it. This was physically tough to do”.

Directed by Karan Malhotra of Agneepath fame, and starring Ranbir Kapoor, Sanjay Dutt, Vaani Kapoor and Ronit Roy, this action extravaganza has been produced by Aditya Chopra and is set to release in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu on 22 July 2022.