Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahaani is the “Karan Johar-est” film of the director’s career, said actor Ranveer Singh on Tuesday, stressing that the upcoming movie brings back the feel of Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham… that marked his initial journey in filmmaking.
With Rocky Aur Rani…, Karan returns to direction after 2016’s Ae Dil Hai Mushkil. It will be released in the 25th anniversary year of the filmmaker’s career that saw him deliver hits such as Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham… and My Name is Khan.
Ranveer, who plays the lead role opposite Alia Bhatt, said the film is a quintessential Karan Johar movie and has all the elements that made him popular.
“This is Karan Johar’s ‘Karan Johar-est film’. This brings back the feel of Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham…. It was a very concerted and deliberate effort. Karan Johar is bringing back that type of cinema that we grew up watching on the big screen. It has been such a big part of our lives,” the 38-year-old actor told reporters here.
To a whole generation, Karan’s Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham… are nothing short of “cult classics”, Ranveer said.
“These movies form an integral part of our growing up years. So this film has all those qualities of Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham… — the family, songs, happiness, joy.
“I believe this is a film that will make people really happy. They would have a smile on their face and a feeling of warmth in their hearts,” he added.
The actor was speaking at a press conference where he along with Alia unveiled the much-anticipated movie’s new song Ve Kamleya.
The film’s trailer, which was unveiled earlier this month, teased the story of a couple, who comes from contrasting backgrounds and cultures. The movie also features veteran actors Dharmendra, Jaya Bachchan and Shabana Azmi.
Alia, 30, said Rocky Aur Rani… is a movie that celebrates the diverse culture of India.
“It is a very different film and space. I think the beauty of our country is that we are so rich in culture. You always get that feeling when you represent opposing cultures, like north India and Bengal here.
“That combination is fun to see because it is very rich in culture, colourful and there are so many dynamics that come into play,” she said.
The atmosphere on the film’s set was light and funny, said Alia, who made her acting debut with Karan’s 2012 directorial Student of the Year and later worked in his production ventures, including Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania, Kapoor & Sons and Raazi.
“Ranveer, Karan and I, we are very instinctive. We like to go with the flow and we like to be surprised. We don’t like to over-rehearse. We like to be in the moment and focus on that.
“Of course, the blueprint of the script that we have in our minds doesn’t move. (But) we used to have a lot of fun and not take ourselves too seriously. We would work really hard and give our 100 per cent every day. But the energy on the set was never serious, even when we shot serious scenes,” she said.
Ranveer said the family drama has a heavy dose of humour.
“In Karan’s own words, this is probably the most humorous film. There is a generous amount of humour throughout the film and because of that, the vibe and energy on set (was great).
“Karan himself is a born entertainer, always cracking jokes. So it was zany, fun. I would wake up and look forward to going to the set everyday. It was like a bunch of friends coming together and making a movie. It is important to have that energy on the set, it transferred to the film as well,” he said.
The two actors, who previously co-starred in 2019’s Gully Boy, also recalled their most cherished moments from the film’s making.
For Ranveer, sharing screen space with Dharmendra was a dream come true moment.
“My first scene with Dharamji was a face-to-face conversation. When someone said ‘roll camera’, that was when it hit me that ‘Oh my god, it is Dharmendra’. I had to collect myself very quickly and perform.
“But it was a surreal moment for me, sharing the screen space with such a legend. I grew up watching him and it was like straight out of fantasy,” he said.
Alia said she would always observe the veterans’s acting process on the set. “With Shabana ji, the special thing I noticed was that she would smile one moment and the next moment, she could cry in a scene as well. She wouldn’t require any preparation. Jaya ma’am would refuse to sit in between the shots.
“And Dharamji would remember his scenes well. He would do his homework. Even the rest of the family, the whole ensemble cast was just so fantastic,” she said.
Produced by Dharma Productions, Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahani is scheduled to hit the theatres countrywide on July 28.
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