It’s strange but the fact that I called up Imran Khan to find out more on the on-going success of his rom-com IHLS put me in a spooky moment. The moment: the actor was shooting for his latest Coke advert with Dibakar Banerjee and you see his latest film buzzing with a lot of fizz. And then you recall your school days when Aamir Khan did the same thing (created a frenzied fizz) after the release of his blockbuster QSQT, then came some flops, and then Dil did the trick. Back to the future, Imran has become the blue eyed boy of Bollywood. And we won’t be surprised to see girls camping outside his Pali Hill residence soon, if that’s how we see his love story work. He was a pin up then, and is a pin up now. It’s like this, Imran Khan is waxed in Madame Tussauds, and just like the British women created history by recording maximum number of kisses on the wax statue of Pattinson, our Indian female fans will surely achieve a new feat in the dome outside Bakers Street. UK’s Harrow Observer columnist and Bollywood Hungama‘s London correspondent talks to the doubly born youth icon Imran Khan post the super success of his rom-com IHLS. And it’s rather spooky, but his audiences still recall his Jaane Tu days. And what Imran didn’t see coming were the teen girls who’d fallen in love with him once more. If that sounds clichÃ©, God help Imran.
Never heard clichÃ©s working that well Imran…
I’ll tell you very honestly, most romantic comedies have pretty much the same story line. What makes some work is how you treat it. It really is all about that. The most important thing in a romantic comedy is the interaction between the boy and a girl. If that works, you’re game. Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na was one of the most clichÃ©d romantic comedies to be made but Abbas Tyrewala’s treatment to the screenplay and how he shot it made the film work.
Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na was one of the most clichÃ©d romantic comedies
IHLS works because of ‘moments’. Do you agree?
Yes. Moments are the things that the audiences remember and take back with them. Even before the film came out, there is a line in the trailer which went, “Bus, that’s it?” which Sonam says and I question her, “Kyun..aur kya karna chahti ho.” These are the moments which audiences loved in the trailer.
You’re right Imran, because the word which people are seen using now-a-days is ‘fugly’.
(Laughs) You know what…I’ve been hearing a lot of ‘fugly’ and ‘idhar udhar ki baatein..vagera vagera’.
This is what audiences were saying after watching IHLS. “We were waiting for Imran of Jaane Tu.” Were you waiting for the same Imran?
Apparently it was. I just didn’t know it. For me, I never followed any kind of a pattern for working. I always went with what interested me. I see which directors have offered me scripts and I read them and pick the exciting ones. It’s that simple. I picked IHLS on the same lines.
Audience take out cash and if they are not satisfied, they have all the right to say what they haven’t enjoyed
Do you believe that we as audiences have forgotten to enjoy cinema? Because everyone is thinking that they are critics.
I don’t think that’s true. A lot of people do. But for the most part, why do people spend money? Why do they go to a movie theatre? They go to have a good time and have fun. They take out cash and if they are not satisfied, they have all the right to say what they haven’t enjoyed.
Are you enjoying your new found success?
Of course yes. It is important to enjoy it. The best part is that I get to know from the people and that’s what makes it exciting. We all, whether we are writers, directors, producers, actors, technicians, spot boys, everyone associated with the film is working on one mission, that the film should be liked by our audiences. That’s the ultimate desire. We make movies just for this moment (laughs).
I would disagree that IHLS is a tried and tested formula
What a right time to call you. You are shooting the Coke advert right now with Dibakar when the fizz of your film IHLS still prevails.
Yes, it is (laughs). I am shooting this Coke advert with Dibakar. He also did my last Coke advert. We’ve got a wonderful professional relationship and I am really liking what he is doing with this Coke advert too.
Do you guys discuss out the possibility of working together for a film in the near future?
Yes, of course. There are always conversations going on. If you meet anyone in the same field, then you start talking about the prospects of working together.
Karan Johar‘s biggest risk was Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. He changed romance from that film on celluloid. Till date, except Kurbaan, don’t you think he has treaded the path of tried and tested and passed throughout?
I would disagree to that because a tried and tested formula doesn’t always necessarily work. Also, I would disagree that IHLS is a tried and tested formula. The story is a classic romantic comedy but what is unusual about this film is the brand of humour. The tendency in Hindi films is very loud comedy or a slapstick comedy. You can see the joke coming. IHLS has a sharp humour. Lines are delivered in a flat tone, not to loud and a bit sarcastic too. The audiences had to catch the humour this time and that to me was really new. We’ve tried this very few times in this industry.
When do you buckle your shoes up for the success party?
I’m hearing rumours that there is a party tonight, so let’s see. I might buckle up in a few hours (laughs).