New Delhi: Bollywood's dimple-cheeked guy, who made many women skip a heart beat with his chocolate boy looks in 'Mast' almost a decade back, is set to return to the silver screen with a horror film '1920: Evil Returns'. Aftab Shivdasani might not have tasted success as many would have anticipated but the actor is happy to get back in front of the camera after a gap of two years. And, a sort of a comeback in the films with a horror flick is what the actor desired for.
"I always wanted to do a horror film and when Vikram Bhatt approached me for '1920: Evil Returns', I jumped at the opportunity. The film has been a successful franchise in 2008, so people have a certain expectation from this film. It is a beautifully written script. It is a period film which I always wanted to do. So, everything looked just perfect to me to be a part of it."
But, the journey for Aftab, who has been missing from the limelight since past two years, has not been easy. However, he calls the break unpredictable yet fruitful. "In a span of ten years, I have 40 films to my credit. But later, I was not excited with the kind of offers I was getting. I didn’t want to work in films that I was not satisfied about. However, it became an unpredictable but a fruitful break for me. It gave me sometime to introspect. God gave me the patience to sit back for two and a half years. He gave me an opportunity like '1920: Evil Returns' which happens to be my first horror film."
Where the 2008 horror film '1920' revolved around the life of a married couple living in a haunted house, '1920: Evil Returns' bears no similarity to the previous film in the franchise. "This is the one of the scariest films that one will ever see. While making it, we knew there would be comparisons with the first part. But, I think the director, producer and the writers knew that they had to go a few notches higher than the first part. It’s a brand new story set in the same era with new characters and lot of horror with the premise of love. The film has nothing to do with the prequel. We are just taking the franchise forward."
This might be Aftab's first horror flick but the actor is well acquainted with the nuances of the success of the film. "There is a very thin line between comedy and horror. If you can't scare the audience you might just unintentionally make them laugh. So, we kept this in mind from the very beginning and the response to the promos of the film has been promising. We are quite sure that we would be able to spook out the audience with the film."
From playing a lovelorn in 'Mast' to a murderer in 'Kasoor', the actor has portrayed many characters on screen. But, Aftab, who plays a poet in '1920: Evil Returns', calls it one of his most challenging roles. "Poetry didn’t come to me very easily as I am not fond of it. It was difficult to remember the lines. Poetry is not something you can compromise on. You have to speak everything correctly. So, I had to mug up all the lines."
But, with the success of 'Raaz 3', the industry is suddenly waking up to the long forgotten horror genre. With innumerable films being made in this genre, Aftab thinks that audience over the years have become receptive to this much ignored genre. "Audience has always been used to horror films. The Ramsay brothers were synonymous with horror. But over the years, the technology has changed. The acceptance is of a new age horror. I think technology wise, concept wise we are at par with our contemporaries. The audience over the years has accepted horror films which is an ignored genre in our Hindi industry. The success ratio of horror film is much higher than we think."