NEW DEHLI: With new ideas, new energy and new talent, the Indian film industry is entering the golden period of cinema it left behind five decades ago, says Karan Johar.
“The Indian film industry has changed by leaps and bounds over 10 years. There is new energy, new ideas, new ideologies being represented ... so much talent. We are entering the golden period of cinema which we left behind five decades ago and I think we are going to attain that status very soon,” Johar told IANS in an interview.
“We have come a long way from being perceived as a song-and-dance filmmaking nation to a filmmaking nation that has truly gone global. It has been a great journey for our industry,” said the 38-year-old director whose Dharma Productions is one of Bollywood’s most successful production companies today.
In the last decade, Johar’s own style of filmmaking has evolved - from the college romance Kuch Kuch Hota Hai in 1998 to My Name is Khan in 2010 that reached out to a global audience with its complex and contemporary theme of post 9/11 America.
Both movies featured Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol. The first was widely popular and is still constantly shown on television. The last one, about an autistic man, also received critical acclaim and was a hit in the overseas market.
Either way, Johar had demonstrated then and now that he has a finger on the pulse of an increasingly demanding audience.
In between, he has also produced films like Dostana, Wake Up Sid and Kurbaan - each different in mood and theme and far removed from designer family dramas like Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham.
After the intense My Name Is Khan, Dharma Productions is now ready with the Imran Khan-Sonam Kapoor starrer I Hate Luv Storys.
“I am so looking forward to I Hate Luv Storys. It releases on July 2. It is a fresh pairing. It is an exciting young film by a debut director (Punit Malhotra). It is a young, popcorn fun film with lots of love and mush and all the stuff that Dharma Productions has always stood for. We had deviated (with My Name is Khan) but are now back at it again,” he said with a grin.
Up next in Johar’s production ventures will be the Indian adaptation of Chris Columbus’ 1998 film Stepmom, a heartwarming tale about a divorcee coping with the new woman in her ex-husband’s life and the problems they face to find a common ground of understanding.
The Hindi remake features actors Kareena Kapoor, Kajol and Arjun Rampal.
“The adaptation of Stepmom is ready for release in October but we have not titled it yet. We are hoping we have a brainwave of a title soon,” said Johar.
The sequel to Dostana is ready to roll in August and a remake of Johar’s father’s 1990 hit Agneepath is also in the pipeline,
“As for the Agneepath remake, we are waiting to cast it before we launch it. The script is ready. We are just giving it finishing touches before we approach the lead actors.”
Published in the Express Tribune, June 12th, 2010.
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