Apart from working together in Players, Abbas-Mustan’s Hindi remake of The Italian Job, Abhishek Bachchan and Sonam Kapoor have one more thing in common. Both the actors prefer the original Michael Caine version (1969) over the Mark Walhberg starrer which was remade in 2003. “No doubt Mark Walhberg’s film was very good but I’m a huge fan of Michael Caine’s The Italian Job,” confesses Bachchan, adding that Abbas-Mustan’s changes have enhanced the script. “Yes, Players is an official remake and our directors are very clued in with what they want. The script has their unique individual spin. That’s why I call it The Indian Job.”
Kapoor too admits her fascination for all things vintage. “All heist and con films made originally had some magic to them,” she says, citing examples of The Thomas Crown Affair and Ocean’s Eleven. “The flair in the original The Thomas Crown Affair (1968) is not there in the newer version (1999). And even though the new Ocean’s Eleven (2001) is fantastic and has great actors, I liked the older one (1960) better,” she says.
Considering that theirs is a Hindi remake, one would naturally expect the film to be mostly shot in India. Instead, the team is shooting extensively in foreign locations like New Zealand and Russia, after an initial spell in Goa last year.
Bachchan says, “Keeping in mind the screenplay and the setting, we required certain locations because of the infrastructure they provided. So, the directors decided to shoot in New Zealand and we chose Russia as we have snow sequences. There weren’t any apt locations closer to Mumbai. Players has been Abbas-Mustan-ised.”