By: Moses Navgire, IndiaFM
Friday, August 11, 2006
Filmmaker Onir is known for dealing a complex subject of HIV-AIDS and homosexuality in his last film My Brother Nikhil which starred Juhi Chawla and Sanjay Suri. And now his next film Bas Ek Pal deals with urban relationships and people who are searching for a moment of happiness in their lives. Though Onir's films seem to have a serious tone, the man very well knows how to manage the atmosphere on his sets.
During the making of Bas Ek Pal, the atmosphere on the sets used to be very quiet and peaceful. Sometimes people would say that it didn't even feel like they were making a film as there was no shouting or yelling at all. Besides, since the subject of this film itself is complex, the actors used to be very particular about playing their parts well and portraying the characters perfectly. However, one fine day, while shooting an intense scene Onir decided to pull a big one on Urmila Matondkar. Onir says that Urmila is extremely professional about her work and he was amazed looking at her enthusiasm to play the character of Anamika Joshi, a single, attractive and vivacious woman who is a civil engineer by profession. Urmila would like to know everything well in advance starting from her lines to the dress that she will wear in a particular scene.
Now, there was this one scene that they were shooting in which Sanjay Suri comes towards Urmila Matondkar. It was a very serious sequence where Sanjay is bleeding and there is an exchange of lines between the two. That is when Onir came up with an evil plan. He took the "OK" shot but didn't inform the actors about it. Onir then secretly informed Sanjay Suri about his plan and Suri too became his partner in crime. So, they started rolling again. Poor Urmila was working hard to give an OK take but Onir kept saying that it's not turning out well. Then just before the next take, he shouted out to Sanjay Suri asking him to add more emotions and passion to the shot. So the camera started rolling, Urmila said her lines and when Sanjay Suri's turn came, he just took the blood, rubbed it on Urmila's forehead and said, "From now on, you are my wife!"
Urmila was dumbstruck at what just happened. There she was, performing a very intense scene with Sanjay Suri and the next thing she knows; she is in the middle of an 80's Bollywood Masala film. The whole crew then broke into laughter and Urmila realized that Sanjay and Onir had played a prank on her. It was a very funny moment and amazing to see the how the atmosphere on the set became lighter after that. We'll have to wait for two more weeks to see if the characters in Bas Ek Pal succeed in finding that one moment of happiness but we can say that Urmila surely had Ek Pal of shock while the making of the film.