He has shed his city slicker image for Jal. Purab Kohli, who has featured in films like Shaadi Ke Side Effects, Rock On and My Brother...Nikhil, plays a villager in his latest film Jal.
Low on promotional buzz, Girish Malik's directorial venture has received accolades from critics and film festivals alike. The film released on Friday.
Speaking about the film's reception, actor Purab Kohli told Hindustan Times, "We were not big on promotions and a monster (David Dhawan's Main Tera Hero) is releasing with our movie. But with the response that we have been receiving, we really hope it goes the Queen way."
Purab expresses hope that Jal received good word-of-mouth reviews and picks up in theatres, even two weeks after the release.
"I had worked with Girish in the TV series Sangharsh and knew his work. So when he approached me for Jal, the idea of shooting in the Rann of Kutch was enough to make me go for it. Then, of course the script was awesome and I just had to do it," Kohli said.
The Kirti Kulhari-Purab Kohli-starrer was ready for release in September last year. And then it was selected for the Busan International and Cannes Film Festivals. Purab said that it was disheartening to see the release of the movie getting delayed in India for lack of buyers. "I had stopped working because I wanted to see the reaction of my audience to Jal. At one point, I was like 'kab tak kaam na karu?'," Purab added.
Purab also developed a special relationship in the Rann – with a camel. "I learned camel riding in two days but the kind of relation I developed with this a particular camel (who was a wild stud), was overwhelming and fun."
Speaking about making his first film, director Girish Malik said that he is in love with the medium of cinema. "People kept telling me that I have gone mad and I shouldn't waste my time on a film like this. But I always wanted to tell this story on a canvas larger-than-life. I wanted it to look like Gladiator, it is that kind of a film where the landscape is a major character."
Talking about the release of the movie, Girish said that out of pre-production, production and post-production, releasing Jal was the toughest part. "I have not made the movie with festivals or any particular genre in mind. I just wanted to tell the story in a way that everyone can understand. I cannot make films which are understood by only two out of 10 people."