Sushant Singh Rajput’s short yet memorable career was tragically cut short by his demise. If there was one collaboration that his fans looked forward to, it would have been the one with Shekhar Kapur. Paani, his dream project never took off though the actor invested more than a year preparing for the character of Gaura. Sadly, the project did not happen with the stated production house, Yash Raj Films. Today, filmmaker Shekhar Kapur tweeted,
“If you want to journey with the Gods, or your creativity, you have to walk each step in devotion. In humility. God willing #Paani will get made one day. If it does, I will dedicate it to Sushant. But it has to be made with partners that walk in humility, not in arrogance.”
Sushant Singh Rajput was very fond of Shekhar Kapur. He considered him as his mentor and said he was the only one he implicitly trusted in the movie business. Last month, Kapur told Hindustan Times, “He was bouncing up and down, so excited that he was going to work with me and do Paani. The great thing about Sushant that I noticed was that acting did not stop with rehearsing the lines or reading the script or doing the movements. His interest went way beyond… Every time I had a meeting with the production designer or the DOP or VFX team, he was there.”
The decision of shelving the film hurt Sushant immensely. Kapur further said, “Jab film bandh ho gayi (When the film was shelved ) and he realised he wasn’t doing the film, bohot roya woh. Main bhi roya. Woh rota tha toh main bhi rota tha saath-saath (He cried a lot, I also cried a lot. I cried whenever he cried) because I was also passionately and deeply involved with it. Humari zindagiyaan hi kuch aisi hoti hai (Such is our life) – ups and downs. Aur yeh jo lafz hai – depression Aisa nahi hai main keh raha hoon ki depression nahi hoti, main aisa keh raha hoon ki depression ek lafz hai jiske saath hum khel lete hai (Our lives are full of ups and downs. This term – ‘depression’… I am not saying that depression does not exist, I am saying that we play with depression). As creative people, it is an emotion that we play with.”
Post the actor’s demise, his Kai Po Che and Kedarnath filmmaker Abhishek Kapur took the initiative of feeding poor families in the pandemic. Actress Bhumi Pednekar also joined them in the cause. His family has plans to set up a foundation in his name to support young people in the field of education, arts and sports. Sushant Singh Rajput actor was a philanthropist who quietly donated crores for causes in states like Kerala and Nagaland.