Filmmaker Nitin Kakkar needs no introduction. The five-film old director already has a National Award under his kitty for Filmistaan (2012). His upcoming rom-com Jawaani Jaaneman starring Saif Ali Khan, Tabu and Alaya F is creating all the right noises. Casually chatting with producer Jackky Bhagnani at Pooja Entertainment office, the filmmaker, who accepts being bad at keeping box-office records, admits it's 'okay' for his films to clash with others. “Filmistaan clashed with an Akshay Kumar's Holiday but still it did well."
From openly talking about the failure of his previous film Notebook to why he did not cast Saif’s real-life daughter Sara Ali Khan in Jawaani Jaaneman, Nitin sat down with PeepingMoon.com for an exclusive chat...
Excerpts from the interview:
Why Jawaani Jaaneman?
I reacted to the script. I found the premise very interesting and I think our country needs to explore such relationships. We are very cool people but we just take a baggage of a lot of things. There was a time where divorce was a taboo but now people have moved on. I thought it was a great time to make this film.
Is it stressful to direct debutantes?
There’s pressure because it is their first film and you want it to work for them. These debutantes are working towards to make their names as established actors. So the pressure exists.
Did you train Alaya F?
When I first met Alaya, I knew she was hardworking and a few tweakings were what I had to do. Whenever she was at the set, I never felt she was a debutante. She was water, she blended with everybody.
Why not Saif’s real-life daughter Sara Ali Khan for Alaya’s role?
I wanted a new face and by that time Sara was already in Kedarnath, it was going to release. The fact that everyone knew Sara was Saif Sir’s daughter was something I did not want for the film. I wanted a new girl who didn’t have an image as such.
How did you strike a balance between working with acclaimed actors like Saif Ali Khan-Tabu and newcomer Alaya?
When I am on a set, it doesn’t matter who’s who. We automatically become a team. Saif Sir and Tabu Ma’am made me very comfortable and no one made Alaya feel like a newcomer. We were all so involved with the script that all these things didn’t matter.
You recreated not one but two iconic songs – Dil Luteya and Ole Ole. Why?
The audience enjoys it. It’s very simple – demand and supply. You will never see us supplying something which is not in demand. There is a quicker connection between the audience with remakes rather than a new song. As long as it’s good, it’s okay.
What did you think went wrong with your previous film Notebook?
I wish I knew it because I don’t do these analyses. I don’t want to analyze and live in the past. I don’t believe in getting my National Award in my sentences because that is my past and so is Notebook. But having said that, Notebook was a great journey, I enjoyed doing it. Everybody involved in it has taken something home. It is going to stay with us all our lives. You don’t have control over box-office. I don’t understand how some films make so much money and how some of the very good films don’t make that much money. If you stress yourself out there, you will stop being a filmmaker.
Do you think your film’s clash with two other films will affect its business?
Actually I am not the right guy to talk about the business of a film. Filmistaan came with Akshay Kumar’s film and we were a nobody at that time but Akshay Kumar was Akshay Kumar. The film still did well. So we cannot stop films releasing on the same day. I would rather think about scripts and how to make a good film than thinking about clashes.