You’d think that the Hindi adaptation of The Night Manager would be viewed as a prestige addition to one’s filmography. But Sandeep Modi, who has served as the creator of the Anil Kapoor and Aditya Roy Kapur-led thriller, remembers being dissuaded by many from taking up the project. “I got so many calls from people saying, ‘Are you mad? Are you going to remake a classic? Don’t touch it.’ They said it would be the end of my career, which is [taking off] after the success of Aarya’s first season,” begins Modi.
The British original aired in 2016
The creator-director couldn’t be happier to have taken the chance on the Disney+ Hotstar series, which has been praised since its release. It is an official adaptation of the 2016 British series of the same name, fronted by Tom Hiddleston and Hugh Laurie. Modi shares that he let go of a movie he was making at the time. “I liked the idea of [retelling] this story, and gave two-and-a-half years of my life to this. I stopped working on the film, and the advertisements I used to make. I got consumed by this tale.”
The spy thriller tells the story of a night manager at a luxury hotel, who is recruited to infiltrate the inner circle of an arms dealer. The pressure of remaking a popular global show can be immense. Modi spent months cracking the crux of the story, and the characters’ motivations. He shares, “I grew fonder of the tale after the first six months. I enjoyed it more when I realised that it is a universal story. I didn’t need to borrow from Jonathan Pine and Richard Roper [Hiddleston and Laurie’s characters respectively]. These characters are people around me, if I look at them closely. The moment I found out why a guy, who works in a hotel, would turn into a spy, everything came together for me.”