New Delhi: Ajay Devgn has become a permanent fixture in Prakash Jha`s films, latest being `Raajneeti` and the director says he enjoys working with the national-award-winning actor because he can fit in almost any character.
"I really enjoy working with Ajay and same is true for him. He is not only a great professional but also a very nice human being. That gives him an extra edge," Jha told reporters.
"There is a huge understanding that both of us have for each other. He has a huge range and can do anything. No wonder, whenever I am in the process of writing a film, there is one or the other character that ends up suiting him," Jha said.
Between 1999 and now, Jha and Devgn have worked together in four films - `Dil Kya Kare` (1999), `Gangaajal` (2003), `Apaharan` (2005) and `Rajneeti` (2010).
In the interim, Jha worked in only one film that didn`t feature Devgn, `Rahul` (2001), which was primarily made with newcomers and turned out to be a total washout at the box office. On the other hand `Gangaajal` and `Apaharan` have not just been critically acclaimed but have also seen commercial success coming their way.
This is the reason why that even though `Rajneeti` is a multi-starrer with half a dozen lead actors who range from being veterans (Naseeruddin Shah, Nana Patekar) to relative newcomers (Ranbir Kapoor, Katrina Kaif), there is a definite place for Devgn in the film.
"I spoke to Ajay about the subject of `Rajneeti` way back in 2005 when we were making `Apaharan`. The germ of the idea was already there and I just started developing it thereafter," said Jha.
The director is reportedly trying to rope in Amitabh Bachchan for his upcoming film `Aarakshan` but Devgn`s name is already confirmed.
Coming back to the box office prospects of `Rajneeti`, which is Jha`s costliest project till date, Jha is hopeful that it will be a success.
"When a film works then it benefits everybody. There are good actors in the film so it is natural that people have high expectations from it."
But does not the name Prakash Jha counts? "No, that`s not really justified. At the end of the day it is all about a film and not a director. All expectations should be on a film after all. Initially people may think that it is a Prakash Jha film and come to theaters with lot of expectations. But eventually it is a film which holds them, nothing else."
Also starring Manoj Bajpai in a key role, `Rajneeti` releases all over on June 4.