When it was announced that Ranveer Singh was stepping into the shoes of Kapil Dev for Kabir Khan’s ’83, I knew if there was someone in this industry who could do justice to that legend was Ranveer only. The moment I saw the first picture of him as Kapil sir, I was stunned and proud and that’s when I knew that I was in for something really special. The trailer of ’83 just made that belief concrete. Now, with the release of the film just around the corner, I am too excited to witness the iconic moment of India winning the 1983 Cricket World Cup through the screen.
And even though we appreciate the end result of Ranveer’s efforts, what also needs to be appreciated is the hard work he has put in to reach there. He has perfected not just Kapil’s gait, batting posture, cricketing shots like the famous Natraj pose, but has also aced Kapil’s bowling action in the new poster that dropped today.
Check out the poster here:
Speaking about that, Ranveer said:
“Bowling like Kapil Dev was the most difficult aspect of my character development. He has a very unique bowling action and his bio-mechanics are very unique to him. My body is very different from his so I had to transform my physicality drastically in order to achieve it. It took a long time, in fact months, to perfect the action. Initially, my body was too heavy because I was coming off of the shoot of Simmba.”
The actor added:
“So, Balwinder Singh Sandhu, the legend of the 83-world cup who was also our coach, noticed that my body was too heavy and he said, ‘jab tu run-up mein aata hai toh aisa lagta hai ki pehelwan bowling karne aa raha hai’. And he sent me away for a month just to change my physicality to bring it closer to Kapil’s athleticism, and then, once I did that, I started making some headway. I was playing cricket for 4 hours a day for 6 months and doing physical conditioning for 2 hours a day for those 6 months. Four months of prep and 2-3 months of shoot, I put in a lot of hours.”
But the whole transformation came with it’s challenges too. A lot of injuries and pushing his body to the limit, Ranveer had to undergo a lot to reach the class of an actual cricketer, that too a legend like Kapil Dev.
“There were a few injuries along the way but it was very important for me to crack his action because it is an iconic bowling action and all his admirers will be looking out for whether I did it right or not. More importantly for him to feel that I got it right and for me to feel that I got it right. For it to be just spot on in the film, I had to put in the work but it was very fulfilling. At the end of the process, I have become a decent enough bowler also. Apart from Balwinder Singh Sandhu,a I had a lot of help from our coach Rajiv Mehra as well and there were several sessions that I did on the pitch with Kapil himself who had his inputs also to offer.”
’83 is more than just a film, it’s a celebration of India and cricket and that historic moment when India made its presence felt in international sports. To recreate that on screen is a mammoth task, and with only a few days to its release, I am really excited to relive history on the big screen.