Abhay Deol celebrates 15 years of Dev.D: Maybe I should start focusing on development once again

A decade and a half ago, the Indian film landscape saw the advent of a radical cinematic project that would come to redefine modern storytelling within the industry. ‘Dev D’, directed by Anurag Kashyap and starring Abhay Deol, was heralded for its audacious retelling of the classic ‘Devdas’ storyline penned by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay. Fifteen years on, Deol took a moment to express his gratitude and share memories of his involvement in the film that continues to resonate with audiences.

Celebrating the film’s 15th anniversary, Abhay Deol voiced his thoughts on Instagram about the inception of ‘Dev.D’, a movie that he found far from conventional. Deol discussed the genesis of the film, recalling his proposition to Anurag Kashyap for a contemporary musical version of ‘Devdas’, a pitch that left Kashyap both shocked and excited. “The shock and excitement on his face is etched in my memory,” Deol reminisced.

Abhay Deol also revealed that his vision for the character Dev had its dark conclusions, notably a finale wherein the protagonist meets his demise at the hands of the police— a drastic pivot from the original text, where Dev descends into alcoholism and self-destruction. However, Kashyap chose a redemptive arc for the film’s closure, which Deol mused upon, wondering where they would be had they followed through with a grim ending. He jested about Dev being a “drug dealer, the original chauvinist,” a character that he believed was beyond redemption.

Through his reflections, Deol gave insight into a character that seemed to defy traditional redemption. Yet, his willingness to consider alternative outcomes for ‘Dev.D’ demonstrates the actor’s commitment to unfolding layers of complexity within his roles.

Taking a step towards the present, Deol shared personal anecdotes and current professional milestones. He posted a snapshot from the last day of filming his upcoming project, ‘Bun Tikki’, capturing a moment of camaraderie between cast and crew. His caption conveyed a touching farewell: “Last day last shot. Gonna miss this crew.”

Beyond behind-the-scenes insights, Deol also delved into his past, sharing a heartfelt acknowledgment of his journey from an underconfident and bullied child to an actor fortunate enough to share the screen with stalwarts like Shabana Azmi and Zeenat Aman. “No one had any expectations of me and neither did I inspire confidence from anyone,” Deol expressed in an accompanying note to a photograph of the industry veterans. Celebrating the transformative power of belief and hard work, he encouraged others to dream big, just as he continues to do.

‘Bun Tikki’, which rounds off as Deol’s immediate attention, has piqued the interest of cinephiles, as it brings together two revered actors known for their exemplary contribution to Indian cinema. The anticipation for the film creates a buzz that mirrors the excitement witnessed during ‘Dev.D’s inception.

Abhay Deol’s reflective celebration of ‘Dev.D’ serves not only as a nod to a significant milestone in his acting career but also underlines the significance of storytelling evolution within the Indian film industry. It is a testament to how a single film can influence the trajectory of its actors and filmmakers, ultimately leaving an indelible impact on cinema culture.

As ‘Dev.D’ remains a cult favorite for many, Abhay Deol’s open contemplation on the film’s legacy underscores a journey that encompasses artistic evolution, personal growth, and the perpetual dance of development. In looking back, Deol hints at the future of his craft and the evolution of Indian cinema, promising audiences that the best stories are yet to be told.

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