The Sunny Deol and Ameesha Patel-starrer ‘Gadar: Ek Prem Katha’ that released in 2001, went on to become one of the most watched film in Indian cinema since the 1900s and earned itself a cult status in all these years. It celebrated 20 years of release yesterday and I got a chance to speak to the director of the film, Mr Anil Sharma about the journey this film has gone through and what he has in store for us with the Deols.
He shares that when he first came up with the idea for the story, he instinctively knew that it had the potential to be the ‘Titanic of Indian cinema’. He shares that the idea of the story borrows itself from the Ramayana, where Rama goes to Lanka to find Sita. Much like how Tara here goes to Pakistan for Sakeena. It is the emotions associated with the India-Pakistan partition, the idea of reuniting two lovers, a child with a mother, that he says made the film connect with every person who watched it — then and now.
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He says that everything — from the lead performances of Sunny Deol and Ameesha Patel as Tara and Sakeena, the child actor Jeetu (Anil Sharma’s son Utkarsh Sharma), Amrish Puri as Ashraf Ali, the music, the lyrics —went hand in glove and led to this success.
Speaking of choosing Sunny and Ameesha for their parts, especially Ameesha considering it was her debut film, Mr Sharma says that he wanted someone who would embody the dialogue, ‘Main chahun bhi toh uchchak kar chaand ko nahi chu sakta.’
I wanted someone who had that moon-like beauty and innocence, and she was a girl from a revered family who could carry off that sort of upbringing. I could see all this in Ameesha. She was very hardworking. For 5-6 months, she used to come to me everyday to practice her scripts, rehearsing, costume and hair trials. She had completely embodied the character of Sakeena in that time.
Speaking about Sunny, he says that he knows him personally too and though his popular image is that of a strong and mighty hero, he is a very emotional and romantic person in real life. And he just presented these traits of his personal life in the film.
As Sunny Deol and the Deol family’s bond with Mr Sharma is known, he is all set to direct the Deol’s in the second instalment of the Apne series. And joining this cast will be Sunny’s son, Karan Deol. Ask him about it and he says, “Karan is a very hard-working boy and he is working with a lot of dedication on his character, which is that of a boxer. He has a great potential and I am confident this movie will change his game, making him the next superstar of the Deol family.”
Coming back to Gadar, I’m sure this film will always have a special place in all our hearts and with news of a sequel in the works, it’s only gotten us all more excited and I can’t wait to know more about it soon! What about you guys?
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