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Aafter Percy Jackson, son of Greek god Poseidon, another a�?half-blooda�� is called upon to save mankind. Set in contemporary Mumbai, this is a mythological fantasy authored by model and actor Olivier Sanjay Lafont, and introduces to audiences Saam the watch-mender, the only demigod son of Lord Shiva. Often referred to as a�?Price taga�� or Suhas from the 2009-comedy 3 Idiots in which he played actor Kareena Kapoora��s fiancA�, Lafont will be in town tomorrow to talk to fans about Warrior (Penguin, `399) at Atta Galatta.
One might not immediately place his name, but with over 80 TV commercials under his belt, Lafont is a known face both on and off the silver screen. In fact, the role in 3 Idiots came to him after the casting director saw him in an ad. a�?The film 3 Idiots really did some amazing things for me,a�? says Lafont who moved from France to India at the age of seven when his historian father Dr Jean-Marie Lafont came here to continue his research.
In Warrior, Lafonta��s protagonist Saam comes from a broken family, and the story recounts the courage of a young man who has to go up against his father, all to save mankind. a�?I remembered what impacted me about the Mahabharata were these intense dramas of feuding families, cousins who had grown up together and were now waging war. I wanted to write an epic story, thata��s how Saama��s story came about. Before this was a novel, it was a screenplay. I wanted to make an Indian film that would be on the same scale and have special effects as some of the big Hollywood blockbusters, but with an Indian storyline,a�? he says.
Sharing his experience from the time he was filming for 3 Idiots, he talks about how much hea��s learnt on the sets. a�?In terms of vibes, it continues to be one of the most productive sets I have worked on; everyone really gave their best to the film. Rajkumar Hirani (director) allowed me to shape the character I was playing, which was really great,a�? he says. Besides 3 Idiots, Lafont is also known for his role in the critically-acclaimed Sanjay Leela Bhansali production Guzaarish. a�?I always knew I wanted to be an actor,a�? says Lafont, who was a theatre and English literature major at Colgate University, US, and was part of many theatre productions before Bollywood happened. I am essentially a storyteller, and both writing and acting are just means to tell a story. Thata��s why being an actor, author, screenplay writer, model and a voice-over artiste comes together quite naturally to me,a�? shares Lafont, who is also the scriptwriter for Hari Om, a film by Bharat Bala which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2004.
Waiting in the wings is another screenplay that Lafont has written. a�?It was originally meant to be an Indian comedy. But now that it is done, it might work better as an English film; Ia��m waiting for a producer to pick it up,a�? he says. In the meantime, check out Warrior, a story where it rains universal themes like father-son clashes, besides blood, lizards and frogs.
At Atta Galatta, Koramangala. Tomorrow, 11 am.
Details: 9632510126
a��Nikita Puri

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