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Wednesday, May 31, 2006
For the mathematically accurate Rakesh Roshan, every film that he has made, right from Aap Ke Deewane to Koi...Mil Gaya, has been creatively satisfying. He has never been influenced, by either the market forces, or the traditional norm. He has always carved his own niche, not ever following a beaten track - as is evident from the diverse themes of films like Khoon Bhari Maang, Karan Arjun, Koyla, Kaho Naa... Pyaar Hai and Koi... Mil Gaya.
With his latest krrish, he is all set to usher in a new genre of cinema on the Indian shores - the celluloid celebration of a cult hero, who'd set off a trail-blazing trend. It takes immense guts and courage to pioneer a new genre and make a path-breaking film that leaves behind a feeling of collective envy amongst the contemporaries. Rakesh Roshan has taken the risky route to lead Indian cinema to global dimensions. He speaks about krrish....
At what point of time, did you think you'd be able to carry on with Koi... Mil Gaya?
It was not pre-conceived or pre-meditated. In fact, when I saw Lord of the Rings, where just a ring could carry the story forward, I thought, in Koi... Mil Gaya, I had a real living character, who could take the story forward. An alien Jadoo' had bestowed a super-natural power on the character. I couldn't have left it at that. The concept of that passed-over power would have been incomplete without taking it forward. What would Rohit (Hrithik of Koi... Mil Gaya) do with that bestowed power? How would he use it for the good of humanity? He was innocent. He had no selfish motives in Koi... Mil Gaya. So, in krrish, his power from Jadoo is passed on to his son Krishna, who uses it for saving the world from disaster.
How does the transition take place from an Indian hamlet to an alien country, Singapore?
krrish begins where Koi... Mil Gaya ends. The story had to move from Rohit and Nisha. They die in a mishap (which is narrated in flashback) and their offspring Krishna is nurtured with the same kind of fervor by his grandmother, Rekha. But having inherited the extra-terrestrial powers from his father, Krishna does several rescue acts. His dare-devilry is the talk of the town, and a TV correspondent (Priyanka Chopra) comes probing. Later, the story shifts, taking Krishna to Singapore, where a scientist (Naseeruddin Shah) is devising his own designs to usurp supreme powers. Krishna's mission is to save the universe. Krishna thus transforms into krrish, a universal entity.
Would you concede that it is a mÉlange of Superman, Spiderman, Batman, The Mask Of Zorro, et al?
This is a wrong notion. I have neither been inspired by Superman, Spiderman, Batman or whatever, nor used their illustrative dare-devilry gimmicks. They were comic book characters that were later translated into celluloid heroes. My krrish is a real life hero. krrish has done all the stunts himself. There are no CGs (computer graphics) where Hrithik is involved. You'd be surprised to know that even for risky shots, we have not used dupes, as my special effects team comprising of Mark Kolbe and Craig Mumma were present throughout the shooting of the film. They wanted a first-hand account of what was being shot, and with whom. They suggested that Hrithik perform his own stunts, which he did with great mental and physical stress and strain. The thrills are unparalleled.
How was Priyanka Chopra finalized for the role of the lead heroine?
Hrithik is from home. And he plays the principal role. Why should I have opted for a heroine who was doing 10 films and had no matching dates? I wanted bulk dates. I want my entire team to be focused on my film. Priyanka had the dates that I required.
Apart from the availability of dates, what made you think she was perfect for the role?
I had seen her dressed in a simple salwar-kameez with glasses when she came for Yash Johar's funeral. Her appearance struck me as someone down-to-earth, practical and simple. I was looking for a character with just those kinds of looks and appearance. I decided then and there that Priyanka would play the TV journo that I was looking for.
Does her character as a Star TV reporter have anything to do with your tie-up with the channel for krrish?
Yes, it does have.
Your brother Rajesh Roshan is known for his exemplary talent in background music. Yet, he is only doing the songs. The background is being done by Salim-Suleiman. Why so?
That's only because the film is being dubbed into Telugu and Tamil, and Rajesh is busy with the recording of the songs in those languages. That's how Salim-Suleiman are in the picture. Moreover, they are extremely talented too. So, there's no question of undermining anybody's talent.
Just as krrish has taken off from where Koi...Mil Gaya concluded, would you be making sequels to krrish too?
There's certainly scope for sequels to krrish.
Tell us something more about the thrilling sequences in the film. How did you convince the famed Tony Ching Siu of Hong Kong, to supervise the action sequences in krrish?
When I approached Tony Ching Siu in Hong Kong and introduced myself as a filmmaker from India, he asked to see my credentials. And when he saw Koi...Mil Gaya, he was convinced that I could create a global impact. But he had conditions. And I took care of whatever he wanted, so that there would be no delays during the actual shoot. He wanted a 250 ft high crane for a shoot in Manali. You'd be surprised to know that Tony has never choreographed an action sequence without a crane of that dimension. It was impossible for us to transport such huge equipment along the by-lanes with short bridges. Eventually, it took us days to arrange one from Delhi. If these possible bottle-necks had not been cleared before the shoot, it would have entailed loss of time. This was one of the things that I learnt during krrish. At the end of the day, you have no regrets, since the results are awesome.
You have made films with diverse themes over the years. Would you say krrish is your best yet?
May be not the best yet! But yes, the biggest yet, in terms of volume and size!