EXCLUSIVE: Extraction's Randeep Hooda on working with Chris Hemsworth: Were sweating & bleeding on each other
In a candid conversation with Pinkvilla, Extraction star Randeep Hooda opened up about working with Chris Hemsworth, injuries on sets of the Netflix flick and previous Hollywood offers.
Extraction releases this weekend. The Netflix film, headlined by Chris Hemsworth, sees several Indian stars including Randeep Hooda. The actor gives Chris a good competition with the viewers struggling to keep their eyes off either stars when they are in the same frame. It was refreshing to see the Bollywood star take on an action-packed role in an international project. Turns out, that was one of the many reasons Randeep signed Extraction. In an exclusive conversation with Pinkvilla, Randeep explained how Extraction happened.
"The casting director, Tess Joseph, liked my work and she tested me for it. She showed them (the Extraction makers) my work. Sam said he did watch some of my movies. I am not sure which ones. But he said you've got something that's special and he cast me in this role," he recalled.
The actor also revealed that with so many heavyweights involved in the project, it was obvious he was going to say yes to the project. "Well, there were so many big people involved. From Russo Brothers to Sam Hargrave, Chris Hemsworth and so many others, Tom Sigel, so it was a no brainer that you are going to be a part of it," he said.
Randeep also explained that the meaty international role also drew him to the project. The actor revealed that the off-beat, action role stood out from the parts he was previously offered in Hollywood. "The role was of a character which was not played by anybody from the subcontinent in Hollywood. I have not played it even here (in Bollywood). I had been offered big mainstream movies from Hollywood before but they were parts which were ridiculed, very stereotypes. So this was a great, great opportunity to show the world that we Indians can also do action and it's not just about being doctors and engineers," he added.
Randeep deemed his experience of working on Extraction "fruitful." He explained, "It was a very fruitful experience. It was a grand experience, the scale with which the movie is shot. The kind of preparation that has gone into it. The kind of blood sweat by the action and stunt team and the director and all the actors that have gone into it. It was an overall very good learning experience. I had never done this kind of action before so learning it from the start and best teachers and encouragers in the world was just a fantastic learning experience."
Randeep also hinted that his conversations with director Sam Hargrave resulted in Saju. "Once we (he and the director) started talking about our favourite genre of movies, about the movies and books we liked, we discovered our mutual love for westerns. The western genre movies, the cowboys, Sergio Leone, and it went on to Akira Kurosawa. So a mixture of all that came out and resulted in Saju," he said.
One of the biggest talking points of Extraction was the knife fight sequence featuring Randeep and Chris. The actor recalled the behind-the-scenes of the breathtaking stunt choreography and revealed he and Chris were trying to work together to deliver the edge-of-the-seat experience. "We do post and work together and we were like, 'okay, alright, did you hit me? Oh sh*t, okay let's do one more.' And through the rehearsals also we were sweating and bleeding on each other. I like him, he gives 110% to all his scenes. So that was good," he recalled.
With several action-packed scenes, there are bound to be injuries on sets. However, Randeep revealed Sam Hargrave kept all the safety measures in place to avoid injuries on sets. "There were some body doubles for shots that could have bodily harmed us. But first and foremost, they were very good with safety precautions. Safety always came first for them before the shot. There were very chances of getting injured. The other thing is that because they rehearsed it so much, you could only get hurt if you let your concentration go and not be present," he said.
However, he also pointed out that in action sequences, one does bruise and hits and scratches. "That's the least you can put it. You are going to kill each other with very sharp objects. So that is bound to happen," he added.
Extraction releases on April 24. Read our review here: Extraction Review: Chris Hemsworth's staggering action deserves a theatrical release but falls short on story
Stay tuned to Pinkvilla for more updates.