Exploring a new side of love – Aditya and Shraddha on ‘OK Jaanu’
Three years ago Aditya Roy Kapur and Shraddha Kapoor won million of hearts with their intense love story in Aashiqui 2. The duo are back with their charismatic chemistry in Shaad Ali’s OK Jaanu, adapted from Mani Ratnam’s Tamil film OK Kanmani.
We caught up with Aditya and Shraddha who get candid about their reunion in a chat with Pandolin. They have much to share as they talk about the already drawn comparison between the Hindi and Tamil versions, their individual roles, working with Shaad Ali and much more.
The original film, OK Kanmani, was greatly appreciated. Are you anticipating comparison between the two films?
Shraddha: Yes absolutely, the trailers of the two films have already been compared so the comparisons have already started. I think the comparison is unavoidable because OK Kanmani made a nice connection with people and a lot of people really love the film. I just hope that our film will be able to make a similar connection with people.
Aditya: According to me, whenever you are remaking something, which has been appreciated and loved, you are signing up for comparison. Plus, sometimes no matter what you do and try to make it to the best of your abilities, you will be compared, but you need to realize the reasons you are making the film. You need to remember that you are making it because you have loved the film and you think it deserves to be made again. And that gives you confidence more than pressure. You also know that this format or this screenplay has been appreciated, which is a good thing, as you don’t get to test the water in any other film.
Did you get a chance to watch OK Kanmani? Are there any major changes between the Hindi and Tamil version?
Aditya: Yes, we have watched OK Kanmani, in fact, that was how we decided to be part of the film. Mani (Ratnam) sir told us that he is writing the Hindi version of the script and wanted us to watch the Tamil film. So we watched the film and loved the story and the performances so much that we wanted to be part of this version.
Shraddha: There are a few changes. I don’t think Shaad (Ali) wanted to change anything because everything about the original story was so good. But since the film was been adapted for a Hindi audience so of course, the language is different, the cast is different but other than that there are very few changes in the story.
While working on the film, were you able to identify with your characters, how did you understand Tara and Adi?
Shraddha: To a certain extend I could (identify with my character), but I feel like Tara has rubbed off on me a bit. I really love how she is so fearless about what she wants in life, she is not apologetic about her choices. I appreciate her honesty and moreover, she is very passionate about what she does. She has got this fire in her and I hope to take more from her.
Aditya: Even I could relate to my character, though the character that I am playing is a little younger than my actually age, and is at a stage in life where he has big aspirations and doesn’t want to commit to any relationship; he is enjoying life. He is not taking anything too seriously and is also taking his time as far as relationships are concerned. Similarly, when I was younger, every romantic relationship did not mean marriage for me and I had big dreams too, so I could definitely relate to how the character was feeling.
The film revolves around a live-in relationship, how has the subject been dealt with in the story?
Shraddha: I feel like our film interestingly showcases two perspectives about live-in relationships which I think people will be entertained by.
Aditya: I agree with Shraddha. One of the things that I loved about the original film was that it dealt with these subjects without being too preachy. The film wasn’t saying see how brash the characters are or it wasn’t showing sex for the sake of sex. Plus, it wasn’t damning either sides, it isn’t saying that marriage is a bad thing because you see an older couple in a very successful marriage in the film. And you are also seeing these two young people and they just so happen to be in a live-in relationship. Thinking that the movie is only about a live-in relationship is actually belittling the film.
How was it getting back on the same set after Aashiqui 2? How different was it working on OK Jaanu?
Shraddha: It is awesome to do another movie with Aditya. We had a blast during Aashiqui 2 and while working on this film as well. This film is actually different because it is not in that intense love story space like Aashiqui 2. It is in a playful and light-hearted zone.
Aditya: Yes, working on OK Jaanu and moreover, working again with Shraddha was really exciting. We got to work on a film which made us explore a different side of love. It is not that deep dark side of love that Aashiqui 2 had, this is something lighter and fun. As actors it was nice to come together on something different.
How was the experience of working with Shaad Ali? How would you describe him as a director?
Shraddha: Amazing! He is like wildfire on set. He is really passionate and charged up and his energy is infectious. I have been a fan of two of his films Saathiya and Bunty Aur Babli, so I was very happy when he thought of me for this film.
Aditya: It was great working with Shaad, he has got great energy on set and knows how to bring out the best in actors. He creates an atmosphere where as an actor, you feel like you can take chances and be spontaneous and you won’t be judged. A director is like a parent and you have to really nurture and create an environment where everyone is free to express themselves, which he does beautifully. He would make everyone feel like their voices could be heard, something that not every director allows. When you have the freedom to voice your opinions it brings a feeling of team spirit. That makes everyone feel like they are making a difference to the film and they are invested in the same thing and that we are one big family, which is a very beautiful thing to have on a film set.