EXCLUSIVE: Vipul Shah on Namaste England, Arjun Kapoor and Parineeti Chopra's chemistry and making a franchise

In an exclusive interview with Pinkvilla, Namaste England director Vipul Shah got candid about the lead actors Arjun Kapoor and Parineeti Chopra, their chemistry and making Namaste a franchise.
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In 2007, Vipul Shah entertained the audience with a beautiful yet complex love story in a film titled Namastey London. The film had Akshay Kumar and Katrina Kaif playing the lead roles. Now, he is giving the audience another Punjabi love story with Namaste England. Namaste England stars Arjun Kapoor and Parineeti Chopra together. Arjun and Pari first worked together in Ishaqzaade (2012) and after 6 years, they will be seen in together on the silver screen. The film will hit the screens on October 19, 2018.
Namaste England is creating a lot of buzz because of the trailer, Arjun and Pari's chemistry and the songs. This week, the makers dropped another trailer and fans are amazed by the interesting twist shown in it. In an EXCLUSIVE interview with Pinkvilla, we asked Vipul Shah why did he cast Arjun Kapoor andParineeti Chopra together. He said in several interviews that Akshay Kumar was his first choice to Namaste England. So, we asked him why after Akshay, he thought Arjun is an apt choice. 
Read the interview:
Why Arjun and Parineeti together?
Originally when I'd written this film, I'd written it for Akshay. And long back, Akshay and I had even announced it. But then, the dates were not working out so Akshay told me why don't I work with somebody else on this film. So, I wanted somebody who has a certain character, who can look desi and modern, who is like a typical Punjabi big built boy but, has an honesty on his face and softness on his heart. My first choice after Akshay was Arjun. I went to him and U honestly told him this was going to be with Akshay but since that's happening, would you want to listen to it. He said, why not and he heard the script and really liked it. That's how he came on board. Parineeti was always the first choice because she is perfect for the character. She is a Punjabi girl, who has also lived in the UK and worked there, and we all know she is a terrific actor. Once I got them together, then I realised I got the Ishaqzaade pair again. And for the first time after Ishaqzaade, they will be working together. It was an added bonus but while I was casting, I didn't realise it.
After Akshay, why did you think Arjun is the only apt choice?
As I said, he has got both the elements - desi and modern. The character Param is a guy who can go to any distance for love. The question the film raises is how far are you ready to go for your love. So, I wanted somebody who looks like if he wants he will kill you but he is so soft, everything he approaches is with a certain tenderness. And so, Arjun was a perfect choice. 
Are you looking forward to making it into a franchise?
Yes, next will be Namaste China. I am not kidding. If people love this film, I would like to carry the franchise forward.
Namastey London and Namaste England, both are majorly set in Punjab. How did you manage not to show the Punjabiness in it different than the earlier one?
There is a very minute difference and as a director, you work on scripts and you work on the way you present the film. So, in Namastey  London, the point of view was Katrina's character who comes to India and doesn't like the country because she is forced to come here. So, the way we had shown Punjab in it was very bland and very simple and plain. Whereas in Namaste England, the characters are from Punjab. They fall in love, so you want a world which is conducive for you to fall in love. So, it had to be beautiful, colourful, young and showcase the best things in Punjab. So, in that sense, there was a slight difference in the way the film has been shot. But Punjab is so beautiful that even when you try to show it simple, it still looks very beautiful.
How different was it to work on Namastey London with Akshay and Katrina, and Namaste England with Arjun and Pari?
It was one of the most memorable experiences of my life when I shot Namastey London with Akshay and Katrina. I thought I don't know when I will get the similar experience. As a filmmaker, you want to have so much fun on the sets, that you don't realise the stress you can go through because filmmaking can be very, very challenging. And I got the same experience in this film. We had so much fun, we shot at so many places. It just went so fast, we felt like the film got over in a week. For me, it is as memorable as shooting Namastey London. 
People love to see Arjun and Parineeti together on screen. What do you think of their chemistry?
That is one thing that I was hoping that really comes on screen because the film is about them. It is a film about a young couple, husband-wife. So unless there is chemistry between the two of them, the film can't work. I think whomsoever has seen Ishaqzaade, they have loved their chemistry. I can tell them (audience) that I don't know about any other aspect but at the end of the film, they will carry their chemistry with them. Their chemistry is absolutely fantastic and I really wish that they do more films together.
Watch the trailer of Namaste England below:

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