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Meghna Gulzar in <i>Baat Pakki</i>

By: Subhash K. Jha, IndiaFM
Monday, September 11, 2006
Meghna Gulzar started shooting her second feature film Baat Pakki (earlier titled Honeymoon) for Pritish Nandy Communications (PNC). She has already recorded songs with composer Pritam and seems utterly geared up for the job.

In a flurry to complete her pre-production work Meghna took time off to talk about her long-delayed second feature film. "The way we looked at cast, locations and songs proved that PNC and I think alike. That makes my job much easier. The project came together suddenly. And we had barely a month to prepare. To add to my stress, eighty percent of Baat Pakki is to be shot outdoors. Fortunately Pritish Uncle (Nandy) and PNC are a great team. They haven't made me feel the heat."

Adds Pritish Nandy, "Meghna Gulzar is very gifted and has the skills required to make a fine film. Her screenplay is charming, and it's about- time PNC made a film that reached and touched audiences all over India. Baat Pakki is capable of doing that very easily. It's a simple happy unpretentious film."

Meghna sighs with relief, "Finally...about time. The main cast is in place. A few TV actors are trying to work out their dates for the outdoors. We all know how busy TV actors are. But I'm prepared for the struggle ahead. Ab jab sar par kafan bandh ke nikle hain to ...Esha and Fardeen Khan are the young lead while Moushumi Chatterjee and Satish Shah are the senior couple."

While Esha's mom Hema has worked with Meghna's dad, the formidable Gulzar in Khushboo, Kinara, Meera and Lekin, Moushmi was Gulzar's leading lady in the comedy of errors Angoor.

"So you could say, there's a kind of continuity from my father to me. I look forward to making my dad proud."

Anu Malik had scored the music in Meghna's first film Filhaal . Why Pritam for Baat Pakki? "He was recommended by my producers. They asked me to hear him out. I heard his tunes for three situations in my script. And I loved his music He was keen to work with Papa."

Though there's a gap of four years between her two films, Meghna seems far from stagnant. "It wasn't as if I was sitting at home doing nothing. I've been working during the past four years. I was doing my music videos for Javed Akhtar's album with Shankar Mahadevan and Alka Yagnik. Plus I was writing my scripts and making corporate films. So it wasn't as if I was sitting at home looking at the wall. Direction is like swimming. You never forget it. I just hope my instincts have got better with maturity."

She doesn't want her film to be perceived as a comedy. "It's a light romantic film. I hate to apply the term comedy to my film. It has come to mean something quite different from what I'd like to make as comedy. I can't do slapstick."

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