Acclaimed director Ashutosh Gowariker has given us three great dramatic films with Lagaan, Swades, Jodhaa Akbar but now he is moving on to another genre with his next production. Titled What’s Your Rashi? the film will star Priyanka Chopra and newcomer Harman Baweja and will be a full-on light romantic comedy. Gowariker was looking for something that was less intense and less research needed and he found it in a book that is the basis for the script of film. In an interview with Subhash K Jha he revealed just a bit about the project and here are some highlights from that interview.
Though his prior films all had serious story lines, the new film What’s Your Rashi? will be different. Gowariker said, “Lagaan, Swades and Jodhaa Akbar had the element of drama common to them. What’s Your Rashi? is a light frothy romantic comedy. I’ve never done one of those before. After 10 years and three films that required me to do rigorous research at last I’m doing a film that requires no research.”
The ace director added, “In What’s Your Rashi? I don’t have to go into historical details. But a good comedy is a challenge of its own. The process of arriving at the humour is extremely difficult.”
This will be his first foray into romantic comedy and he is going for a certain comedic style, “I’m thinking of those middle-of-the-road films by Frank Capra, Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Basu Chatterjee like It’s A Wonderful Life, Chupke Chupke and Baaton Baaton Mein.”
The film will star Priyanka Chopra and Harman Baweja, who will first be seen together in Love Story 2050. He chose the couple after seeing rushes of the film and he praised Harman saying, “When I saw Harman in his trailers of Love Story 2050 I requested his father to show me the rushes. He turned out to be fantastic. He’s a superb actor. I was confirmed in my belief that he’s the best person for the part. Harman came into the picture first. Then I signed Priyanka.”
When asked, “Isn’t there a risk of people saying it’s gimmicky casting?” Gowariker answered, “I always go by my hunch. When I cast Hrithik in Jodhaa Akbar I had heard the same complaints. ‘Hrithik as Akbar? What’s wrong with you? You shouldn’t make a historical, and that too with Hrithik.’ Earlier during Lagaan people thought I had gone mad getting Aamir to wear a dhoti. I’m sure Harman will be absolutely correct for the part.”
Gowariker also praised the sci-fi film, “I’m very impressed by Love Story 2050. It breaks the mould, like Krrish. If a person flies it was always said, ‘Yeh Hanumanjee ki kripa hai’. If a person travels in time it’s always reincarnation. Not in Krrish and Love Story 2050. It’s a straight sci-fi film. A genre we’re scared to attempt.”
Back to What’s Your Rashi? and Gowariker says the now that the casting is done and the script is ready he is set to go, “The challenge for me is the script. The actors come later. For the past two months I’ve been in a fragile state of mind wondering what I’d make next. I was completely jittery. Now that I’ve made up my mind to make What’s Your Rashi? and my two protagonists Harman and Priyanka are in place, the rest will just follow smoothly.”
It seems that Gowariker was not quite ready to announce his new project but the story got out, “It wasn’t supposed to come out. I don’t know how the news leaked out, and wrong news. People said it was based on a play. Actually it’s based on a novel. It’s a book called Kimball Ravenswood by Madhu Rye. It takes me far away from my last three films.”
He added jokingly that you will not be able to find a copy of the book to get an advance look at the story because, “I’ve bought every available copy of the novel. You’ll just have to wait for the film. No, I’m only kidding.”
We will keep you up to date on all the What’s Your Rashi? news so watch this space for more!