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Karan Johar has matured. And how! In his forthcoming Imran Khan-Sonam Kapoor-Sammir Dattani starrer I Hate Luv Storys directed by debutant Punit Malhotra, the producer actually takes huge potshots at the mushy kind of cinema that he and his closest filmmaker friends like Aditya Chopra and Kunal Kohli made in the past.
There are pointed and precocious references to Karan"s Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Aditya Chopra"s Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge and other mushy films of the romantic genre that created box office history a decade ago.
I Hate Luv Storys is Karan Johar"s first film on the film industry. There are references in the plot to the record-breaking romantic films by all of Karan Johar"s colleagues including pal Aditya Chopra. Of course Karan doesn"t spare himself either. Apparently, the film"s die-hard Bollywood-hating hero Imran Khan keeps making digs at Karan and his kind of cinema.
Significantly, I Hate Luv Storys comes after Karan has shifted from romance to a serious political-human statement in My Name Is Khan. He"s ready to make that creative shift away from the genre he is identified with. In fact, I Hate Luv Storys goes all out to emphasize the fact that Karan has outgrown mush.
Says Karan sportingly, “Of course I"ve outgrown mush. And, if I"ve to make Kuch Kuch Hota Hai today, I"d do it in a completely different way. Yeah I"ve outgrown mush. But I"ve not outgrown love. In I Hate Luv Storys, Imran plays a die-hard cynic, one of those upper class Mumbai dudes, who looks down on Bollywood. And he keeps making barbed comments on mushy movies."
Karan admits that the film takes potshots at him and his cinema. He says, “But that"s okay. A new generation of directors like Puneet Malhotra who directs I Hate Luv Storys, have come in. They"ve their own take on love. And somewhere what I did in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai may seem outdated now."
While Karan is happy about potshots being taken at his cinema in a film produced by him, one wonders if Karan"s colleagues would be as sporting about being spoofed.