By Joginder Tuteja
After a hiatus of almost 5 years, director Saurabh Shukla has a film release to his name. After making his debut with Mudda – The Issue (2003), he had followed it up with Chehraa (2005). Unfortunately for him, none of the two films worked at the box office and it took him some time before he could embark upon Raat Gayi Baat Gayi. However, he didn’t opt for a safe route as far as the plotline and storyline was concerned. He decided to tell a story about one night and took references from quite a few real life incidents that had happened around him.
However, till the release of the film, there were allegations that his film was inspired by 2009 Hollywood hit Hangover. Even though the makers did make their stand clear by declaring that Raat Gayi Baat Gayi was completed way before Hangover, there were still doubts galore.
Now that this Rajat Kapoor and Neha Dhupia starrer is running on screens, all doubts have been diluted and it is quite clear that except for the reference to a drunk night followed by a hangover, there is no similarity between the two films that were made on opposite sides of the world.
One wonders if Saurabh Shukla, co-writer (with Rajat Kapoor) and director of Raat Gayi Baat Gayi was hurt with these allegations.
“It’s the kind of mindset that we have so I won’t blame people”, Saurabh shrugs away. “Forget about the basic idea which is as distinct as this because even when we are set out to make a love story, people ask if it is based on Roman Holiday or When Harry Met Sally,’ he adds further.
He carries on with his reasoning, “Arrey bhai, in every love story, there would be a boy meeting girl, and they would fall apart and then eventually meet. That’s a basic ground and you can make any film out of it”.
On a tangential note, what does he have to state about his own stint in front of the camera? As an actor, doesn’t it become disappointing for him when he comes up with a tremendous act in a film like Chintuji but no one notices- its because of such a poor release?
“Shall I tell you something honestly? I have left that part long time back when I used to think about what’s happening and what’s not really happening for me”, he says in a calm tone.“
He goes on to add, “My philosophy is that when you are in a moment, whether as an actor or director, feel good about that and enjoy a good high. Reason being that this moment will never be replicated.”
Recalling an example, he states, “When I went to New York (where the film got an award for the Best Film), I was very happy when our names were called. But really, the high that I experienced then wasn’t the kind that I enjoyed two years back when I was making the film.”