JD Majethia is one man, who is donning many a hat, that of an actor as well as film producer. No wonder then, he has named his production company as 'Hats Off Productions'. After having produced the mega popular serial 'Khichdi', the man is back with a bang. And this time round, it's the silver screen that is at the 'receiving end' of 'Khichdi'. In simpler words, JD has done the never-before attempted step of making the popular serial 'Khichdi' into Khichdi - The Movie. This correspondent caught up with this man for an exclusive interview. Over to you, JD...
JD, to start with, what exactly is the film Khichdi - The Movie all about in a nutshell?
The film Khichdi - The Movie is essentially a family story. There is as such no story in the film. We were clear of one thing even if there had to be a story in the film, then; it had to be as mad and crazy as 'Khichdi'. Besides that, our film's story had to be cute with funny situations which will make people laugh. It should make them feel that it's a cute love story. All of this and much more make Khichdi - The Movie a must-watch.
The serial 'Khichdi' never resorted to any kind of vulgar language in terms of dialogue. Now that the serial is getting translated into the silver screen, have you kept the film as well clean from such cheap gimmicks?
With Khichdi - The Movie, one can expect clean family comedy. There has always been a complaint that there is no film that caters to the entire family. Khichdi - The Movie does just that. There was a time when there used to be films by the class filmmakers like Hrishikesh Mukherjee, which always had clean family drama in it. Our film also falls in the same category. To give you a clearer picture, we also have a baseline for the film Khichdi - The Movie, which is 'Comedy Family Ki Family Comedy'. This film has such squeaky clean entertainment that we guarantee the audience to fall off their seats laughing or go madly berserk with laughter. And in order to achieve that, we have not taken the support of vulgarity and sexual overtones, which, according to us, forms the crux and the USP of the film.
Considering the fact that the characters of the serial 'Khichdi' are already a household name, and now with Khichdi - The Movie on its way, don't you feel that all the characters will be stuck with their onscreen image, thus losing their own identity?
Fortunately, this 'identity' remains only for sometime on screen. The minute you do something different in your next project, then, the people will start remembering you with that name. Recent example to this is in the form of Dabangg's Salman Khan now being addressed as 'Chulbul Pandey', as compared to him being earlier called as 'Prem'. And it will be the same Salman Khan who will be addressed as something else with his next hit film. Likewise, with 3 Idiots being a smash hit, Aamir is being called as 'Rancho'. And it is the same Aamir who was earlier called as 'Bhuvan'.
With the unprecedented success of action-packed masala films like Dabangg and Wanted, do you feel that a comedy film like Khichdi - The Movie, will find a place at the BO?
It's also a known fact that it's the same junta who has loved films like Dabangg and Wanted, also have had made 3 idiots and likes huge hits in the past. While Salman's star power worked wonders for Dabangg, it was Aamir and gang that worked for 3 Idiots. As far as our film is concerned, let me tell you that 'content is the king'. And I am dead sure that the audience will love the content that Khichdi - The Movie offers to them.
What makes you so confident that your film will work at the BO?
To tell you the fact, lot of people were not confident about this film, which also included my writer-director Aatish Kapadia. But, I was 100% sure from within that my film will surely work. It has everything that everyone in the family would like to see in a film. Eventually, as all of us got convinced, we planned and shot the film, with double the confidence. We edited the film and showed it to Fox Star Studios. And the best part is that the very moment they saw the film, they simply loved our film. And considering the fact that, it's the same Fox Star Studios who had released mega blockbusters like My Name Is Khan, Slumdog Millionaire, Avatar etc...made us all further more confident about our film. If our movie was not worthwhile, why will such a big studio want to get associated with us?
Besides all of this, we also did a small 'research screening' through which we showed the film to a cross section of people, in Mumbai, Delhi and Ahmedabad to get their feedback. And the response to this was simply outstanding! In addition to that, the response to the promos has also been really very encouraging!
Lastly, what are the changes that one can see in terms of the serial as compared to the film?
We have retained the script of Khichdi, whereas the essence of Khichdi - The Movie will be seen in the film. It was a real challenge to convert the 2 minutes of a serial into a full screen of 2 hour script. We have also shot the film not in small sets like the serial. Since the film is made for a big screen, anything and everything about this film is big.