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Pressmeet - Charas
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28th April 2004
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Director-writer Tigmannshu Dhulia and producer Anjum Rizvi (banner Mediatrack) are releasing their film 'CHARAS - A JOINT EFFORT on May 7th 2004.

CHARAS… is an action- thriller set against the backdrop of drug manufacture and drug running. It stars Jimmy Shergil, Uday Chopra, Irfan Khan, Namrata Shirodkar, Hrishita Bhatt, Adam Bedi, Varun Badola, Anoop Soni, Kabir, Kenny Desai and others. Raju Singh has scored the music, with lyrics by Javed Akthar, sound by Rakesh Ranjan, Cinematography by Setu, Choreography by Longie Fernades & Remo and the film's action is by none other than Allan Amin.

Going through Outlook magazine, Tigamannshu Dhulia read an article about drug manufacture and trafficking in the Malana region of Himachal Pradesh and the large number of foreign nationals that go missing in that region. Malana is often referred to as the Republic of Malana with its own laws and unbelievable, but true the ambience is anything but Indian. It replicates the countries from where its expatriate residents originate from, hence in Malana you will find a German bakery or an American diner, or a French café, etc.

Dhula was fascinated with two particular aspects - the setting of the story with the ensuing "challenge of shooting it outdoors in a location where you don't feel you are in India." The other aspect was the "number of missing people who don't want to be found, especially the young ones who are having fun and they don't want to be found. The setting of hilly forests makes a great backdrop."

The Outlook story not only gave Tigmannshu Dhulia a plot, it also gave him a visual appeal, with a setting in the hilly forests of the north. Having written the basic script, he spent time on location, delved a little more and made changes in the script accordingly.

He adds that, "I found it very challenging and interesting to go shoot almost on location, rather than recreate it in Mumbai or elsewhere. Once you put a challenge in front of me, I take it up." Dhulia had wanted to shoot the climax of his earlier directorial venture Haasil at the Kumbh Mela and had done just that. According to him, such elements take the film way beyond the script. 'CHARAS- A JOINT EFFORT' is a film, which will go way beyond the script thanks to the realistically selected locations and the subject. However, it is not the first time drug trafficking has been a cinema story, for in the 70s Dev Anand had done it with Hare Rama Hare Krishna and Hollywood did the Leonard Capriccio starrer Beach.

The producer Anjum Rizvi says "We are not glorifying drug manufacture and trafficking CHARAS is set against this backdrop, there is no message either, and it is just an action adventure. Not serious like Haasil, but yet a thriller, which is not dark or grim."

By casting Jimmy Shergil and Udaya Chopra the producer and Director have succeeded in giving the film a very youthful fresh appeal, which will connect to the young audience. Jimmy Shergil plays a police inspector and Udaya Chopra plays a street-smart tourist guide from Delhi. Both are in action and mature roles. While Irfan is the drug lord.


Nearly 26000 foreigners come to Kulu Manali every year - many don't return, some are found dead and some are missing. Parents from across the globe - Britain Ireland, Holland Italy Israel and Russia form an amateur investigative network after their children have vanished in the valley of Kulu and Malana.

The film begins with the disappearance of Sam Higgins and English youth who had come to India to study ayurveda in the hills. For the police it's a closed case, but his parents who are politically well connected manage to send a Scotland Yard detective, who is of Indian origin, to investigate into Sam's vanishing. There are some people in England who don't want the officer to succeed as they have a vested interest in the drug mafia - a minister in England, a union mister of transport in Delhi and IG are knee deep in the trade.

The Scotland Yard man meets a street-smart tourist guide in Delhi. They become friends and in a joint effort, manage to survive and untangle a plot, which is twisted in more ways than one.


Pressmeet of Charas was held at Bottles & Chimney, Hyderabad. Jimmy Shergil, Uday Chopra, Namrata Shirodkar and Hrishitaa Bhatt. Jimmy Shergil said that he is playing the role of Devanand - a cop from Scotland Yard. Uday Chopra is playing Arshad Khan - a street smart guy from Delhi. Hrishita Bhatt is playing the role of Naina - a mischievous girl. Namrata Sirodkar is playing the role of Priya Benegal - a journalist.

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