What made you leave the Bhatt Camp?
I keep wondering why I left them. When you work for ten to fifteen years you have certain arguments and you have to go away. Now I find those reasons petty. Mahesh Bhatt and Mukesh Bhatt did a lot for me. They were not only my mentors but also did a lot for me. My father had worked with them on 26 films and I have since him since the age of four. I sulked and was emotional. When four of my films flopped recently I didn't have a turning point I realized that I had avenged them for all that they had done for me. It was time to pay my Guru Dakshina. I approached them and they realized we didn't part for a film but some other issues. Now I am trying to thank them with every frame of Raaz 3.
Raaz 1 was known for its music and it's story. Do you feel that Raaz 3 will do better than that?
Raaz 1 music was good and it was an aesthetically made film there were lot of emotions and there was a story and it was better than any horror film. Now I have done a 25 minute flashback with the character of Malini in this film. Mukesh Bhatt asked me to remove it but Mahesh Bhatt asked me to keep it. People like that portion. There was no horror or fear. In Raaz 3 the horror is in the second half and it's a 3D film.
Do you feel that the Indian Audience has accepted the 3D format? Will we get to see things flying out of the screen this time too?
I used 3D format in Haunted for the first time and this is the third film. . Audience goes to see a horror film with expectations. I have not used 3D just for gimmicks. My films will have Drama, story, suspense, music as the franchise promises. I can bloat about my films to a certain extent but cannot lie people who have seen this film have liked the entire look. Honestly is there is one portion where you will close your eyes. There are some scenes where the girls took off their glasses. In Hollywood they use the 3D for story telling too. I wanted it to look like a painting and they said it was not coming. They find it as a gimmick. In Raaz 3 you will find a lot of things coming out of the screen.
Bipasha is making a comeback with the Bhatt camp with this film. She was going to do Murder 2 also but then Jacqueline Fernandes was signed. We have heard Jacqueline was also considered for this film. How did you finally get Bipasha on board this tim
No it was the Bhatt's priority. They had approached her for Murder 2 but I think they had differences. I was never in touch with Bipasha. But she had told them that if something new comes up she will work with them. When Shagufta and I worked together on Raaz 3 we were not very happy with the story we were not deciding on what we wanted in the film until Mukesh Bhatt finally gave us a deadline. We narrated the story to Jacqueline but she was not happy about the sexuality. Esha Gupta was already doing Jannat 2. So finally we spoke to Bipasha and narrated the story to her and she agreed. You may not believe it but Shagufta often jokes that she has so much material that we can make ten sequels of Raaz now.
Do you feel music is a must in a Horror film?
Hindi films are based on the old art form of Indian Nautanki where there is drama and music. Every film is a musical. Even Hollywood makers have accepted the fact that there is music in every film it's a particular art form of India. Indian Horror films always have mystery, romance and music. The audience has accepted it that way. Old classics like Mahal, Kohraa and Bees Saal Baad have had story, romance and music. We are the Thali tradition people. We want a mix of everything. We can't make a film like Friday The 13th or a paranormal activity film like The Blair Witch Project. We cannot make a technical horror film. Horror film is one genre which is not everybody likes. Those who like such films are the loyal audience.
Is sexuality a must for every horror film?
Sexuality and horror have always gone together. It's like vices and versus. Evil comes with all the vices and sexuality. Most of the Hollywood films a devil come always when the heroine goes for a bath. At least I don't do that in my films.
Is there any bit of your real life in the film? Especially you have shown how a heroine becomes insecure with her downfall?
My real life is so dramatic that Raaz 3 is nothing in front of it. I have had relationship with two actresses and lived with them closely. However beautiful a woman may be she becomes cold and insecure and angry when her films don't do well. She has a very short shelf life. I have seen them closely. In Raaz 3 Emrran Hashmi is caught by two superstars one who is a rising star and the other a fading one and how they are caught in a web of their insecurities and fear. I have felt closely. I could bring to the scenes something so real and experience that no person has been able to bring it out. It's not a film about any incidents. It's what I have seen and learn. Both Amisha and I saw bad times together and when good times came we were not together. We broke off before 1920. I have seen her struggle. A girl who came with two top banners Kaho Na Pyaar Hai and Gadar she arrived at the top. She saw other girls overtake her. I saw other directors take me over. I have seen her being excited when she got a Yash Raj film Thoda Pyar Thoda Magic later but it didn't do well. I have seen the pain of failure up close and personal. She never resorted to black magic. I have memoirs of a girl fighting hard to bring back the time she had lost and I was doing the same. Lucky I was able to reinvent. I wish her all the luck in her future endeavor. I hope everything works for her and goes well because I have seen her go through a lot in terms of her parents, her case and everything. Unfortunately, It all came to her at one go.
There are a lot of changes in Bipasha ever since you made Raaz?
Every director and actor goes through four phases in his life. He came, conquered, defeated and a comeback. It happens in everyone's life but a director makes a comeback as he reinvents himself he has no shelf life. Bipasha is a friend she was raw when she did Raaz with me. I remember we shot a song with Dino and her and they both danced so badly that we had to finally delete it from the film. She was ten years younger. Our relationship is the same but I can't fool her now she has wizened up.
Do you believe in black magic and have you ever borne the brunt of it?
I have not seen anyone doing black magic. I believe in it and I also believe in negative energy that causes a lot of problems. But yes I have been to guys to get rid of black magic. They have told me things even my mother didn't know about me.