Katrina Kaif was dropped because of film length: director

April 26th, 2008 - 10:10 am ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Taare Zameen Par
By Subhash K. Jha
Mumbai, April 26 (IANS) Director Siddharth Anand says he knocked off the section of “Bachna Ae Haseeno” that was to feature Katrina Kaif because the film was getting too long. “If we had kept Katrina’s portion ‘Bachna Ae Haseeno’ would’ve been one of the longest films in the history of Hindi cinema - much beyond three hours.”

The director admits it wasn’t easy breaking the news to Katrina.

“Nobody had the heart to break the news to her. When she heard she was out, Katrina was really upset. What to do? In fact, Katrina’s track was one of our favourites, but she saw our point of view when she saw the film,” Anand told IANS.

Ranbir Kapoor plays the main lead in this romantic comedy and will be seen courting Bipasha Basu, Minissha Lamba and Deepika Padukone.

“The only reason we dropped the Katrina track was because it hadn’t been shot. Otherwise, she’s the biggest star we’ve in our film. Katrina has had only one flop in her entire career. Dropping her track had upset all of us,” he added.

For Anand, directing his childhood chum was inevitability. Not only are their parents close friends, but Ranbir and Anand also grew up together.

In fact, the two had made a pact that they would start their careers together. But then Anand got busy with his two back-to-back Saif Ali Khan starrers.

“Ranbir and I are like brothers. I know him from the time he was born. I’m shocked by Ranbir’s expertise in front of the camera. In my film, he’ll be completely different from the way he was in ‘Saawariya’. Ranbir is full ready on the sets. Superb energy and a great dancer.”

So how does it feel to be making his third romantic comedy?

“‘Salaam Namaste’ was a romantic comedy, but ‘Ta Ra Rum Pum’ was a family drama. I never executed it as a romantic comedy. It didn’t do as well. Probably my concept of poverty, not getting good food, didn’t jell with the audience. That was my interpretation of poverty because I’m a foodie and not getting great food is the biggest deprivation for me. I need good food to keep me happy, healthy and fat.

“Anyway, people have been catching up on it belatedly on the cable and DVD. I was happy the producers didn’t lose money. ‘Bachna Ae Haseeno’ is again a romantic comedy. I feel it stretches the genre.”

His film releases Aug 15. “I just saw my poster with the date and my hands went cold.”

The director feels there’s an instant connectivity with the audience through the title.

“And it’s not just because Rishi uncle sang the words ‘Bachna ae haseenon’. Anyone who’ll see my film will know it’s the most apt title. However, Ranbir being in the film, the title does acquire an added dimension.”

Like his last two films, Yash Raj Films is producing this one as well and Anand says the banner is like a second home for him.

“I’ve been part of the banner for 10 years. I started by assisting on ‘Mujhse Dosti Karoge!’” He now plans to make a film for Sajid Nadiadwala.

The director who has worked with big names believes that stars bring in the audience.

“But I think a film like ‘Taare Zameen Par’ would’ve worked even without Aamir Khan. We’ve some supremely talented actors like Irrfan Khan and Kay Kay Menon. Hopefully, I’ll be working with them soon.”

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