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Kabaad-the coin mirror of today’s cinema: Shahzad Ahmed

From the past few decades, writer Shahzad Ahmed has written many original stories for the film industry which cannot be forgotten. ‘Manjhi: The Mountain Man’, sets an example of human courage, and conveys a message that nothing is impossible for a man in this world. Whereas, another story of the film ‘Dussehra’, exposes the dark truth of social and political corruption. While Gulmohar gives birth to a different mode of cinema as an experimental cinema. 

Last month on May 17, 2021, Shahzad’s ambitious thriller love story Kabaad The Coin released on MX Player, featuring Vivaan Shah, Zoya Afroz, Atul Srivastava, and is directed by Varadraj Swami.
The story revolves around a boy named Bandhan, who lives in Mumbai chowl. One day he finds a bag, full of black antique coins, which is being searched by Mumbai police and the underworld.

Question: What is the subject of this film, Shahzad? What do you want to say about this film?

Answer: The film ‘Kabaad The Coin’ is based on the human psychology of money that describes various emotions love, romance, deceit, and deception. We often hear people saying, if you don’t have money then you have nothing. Money is everything, money is god. I want money, no matter from where it comes, whether the right way or wrong. There is a fight going on around the world for money. It’s like war and everyone is running after it and money is killing everyone. Keeping this story in mind, we have tried to convey this through the film.

Question: What made you think that this is the story you should work on?

Answer: I always like to work on original stories and to me, it doesn’t matter what category of the story is. you can watch any of my movies to date, I always try to convey whatever is on my mind and it hardly matters to me, what people will think. What I feel is, we are the trendsetter in the market, and whatever we will showcase will become a trend. As far as the question is concerned, from where did the idea of the story came from, so it is like, I have always been fascinated by realistic stories. Once, during the night time, I and Varadraj were coming from the shoot and on the roadside, and while on our way, I saw one wheel of the vehicle of a scrap dealer got broke and that person was trying to fix that wheel and was constantly hitting it with a hammer. But accidentally the hammer strikes his toe and blood started coming out. My heart trembled from inside. I called a mechanic and told him to fix the wheel and I will pay you the money. He did his job and we paid him. At that point in time itself, the story touched me and from there onwards this story unknowingly started running in my mind and today it is in front of you all.

Question: How long did it take to write the film?

Answer: It took almost six years to write this story. We worked on about fifty drafts Whenever we use to work on some different project, we used to take short breaks to work on the script. After every week or two, some new ideas used to hit our minds and we used to work on that as well and when the script finally got ready, we first narrated it to Ketan Mehta sir who is our mentor. He has always guided us. Whenever we start to work on a new story, we always consult him first. He has given a lot of valuable advice.
Even after we narrated the story, we still worked on its script for six months. When the final script was ready, then we narrated it to producers Babban Negi and Vivaan. Our working style is quite different.

Question: It took you a long time to write the script, whereas nowadays people complete the scripts in very little time…

Answer: I can’t talk much about people. Yes, I do agree that everyone has their own way, circumstances, and purpose. I always work on original stories that are different from my own experiences and for that, I have to do a lot of research and study, which is a challenging part. I take up challenges and fight it fiercely until and unless the soul comes into my story. Till then, I keep working on it. I write scripts for my satisfaction and not just to make money or to satisfy the producer. The most important thing for me is to get satisfied. This is the reason why it took so long to complete the script of this film.

Question: What kind of stories do you like?

Answer: Look, I am not a traditional writer that I start working on a particular genre. I write on the comedy and thriller genres. The story that touches me and starts hammering my mind, again and again, I’ll start working on it. I think very freely and this is the reason why every film of mine is completely different from each other. 

Question: What is the basis of your selection of the stories?

Answer: Before starting with any story, first what I see is whether there is a soul or not. What is the range of the story? How many colors are there in it? What is the realistic approach? How original is the story and most importantly, what the story will convey? How much positivity is there in it? How much you can laugh at it or how much it can make you cry or how much it entertains you? So, many such factors are kept in mind before working on any of the stories.

Question: As a writer, do you feel now you have incorporated every element involved of Kabaad-The coin?

Answer: Of course, the result is out in front of you. The film is running in the evergreen category on MX Player. IMDb rating is 9.4/10. I think this story will prove to be a milestone in the stories of all time and will always be a topic for discussion.

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