Mumbai: One of this year’s hits is Sriram Raghavan’s mystery-crime-thriller Andhadhun starring Tabu, Ayushmann Khurrana and Radhika Apte.

The film with an approx budget of Rs 25 crores revolving around a piano player who becomes embroiled in a whodunnit murder has already crossed Rs 46.25 crores and been declared a super hit at the box office on its 13th day of release. Apart from the layered story, the performances of the lead actors have been highly praised too.

But only a handful of people associated with the movie know that Andhadhun has been produced by Hrithik Roshan’s ex-manager, Ashok Vashodia who had been handling the start for more than 18 years.

Talking about it for the first time, Ashok Vashodia says, “It’s true that Sanjay Routray and I have produced Andhadhun. We started our company five years ago and also have directors like Prabhu Deva and Nishikant Kamat signed with us. I am an independent producer. I took a break from Hrithik’s work last year in June-July as I wanted to produce Andhadhun. At Matchbox Pictures we are looking at good content and character-driven cinema ”

Vashodia says that Andhadhun was not made with Hrithik in mind. “There was no need to approach Hrithik, he himself keeps rejecting many films and does only a few films in a year. He took a long break after Kaabil and then when my shooting started I took a break from his work. It has been my childhood dream to become a Bollywood producer after I came to Mumbai and my dream has now come true. The first film of ours has hit a sixer and we are ecstatic.”

Explaining the reason why and his partner have not been vocal about their presence as producers, Ashok says, “We wanted to promote our production house Matchbox Pictures. Also, the studio we worked with didn’t hype us. The publicity or promotion was not as well as we expected it to be but word-of-mouth publicity worked wonders for the film. I am very happy with the movie’s success. I never expected that we would get so much appreciation and the film would become such a big hit. It’s a miracle! The collections are growing every day and the film has been appreciated. Now we will start our next projects with Prabhu Deva and Nishikant Kamat and the movies will be according to their styles – musical comedy with Prabhu Deva and a stylish, realistic drama with Nishikant.”

The debutante producer adds that he is still in touch with the Roshans. “Hrithik is in Italy right now but I am sure he must be aware of the film’s success. If he was here in Mumbai I would have kept a special screening for him. Rakeshji never goes for trials. He always likes to go to a theatre to watch the film on the first day.”