By Joginder Tuteja
Ram Gopal Varma is akin to a playboy when it comes to cinema. He moves from one movie to another without any hang ups, left over emotions, ill feelings or sentiments to deal with. Hit or flop, he rather refuses to carry any baggage of even his most recent work and goes on to pick his next ‘subject’.
His past work like ‘Company’, ‘Bhoot’, ‘Sarkar’, ‘Rangeela’ or ‘Shiva’ may have continued to act as benchmarks for each of his newer release, even his latest ‘Rann’ has managed to stay in news. Whether it is the mammoth cast led by Amitabh Bachchan, the topicality of it’s theme, the entire National Anthem tweaking incident, Raima Sen replaced by Neetu Chandra- just about everything has managed to create headlines. Considering the fact that the film is about media, one wonders if Ramu has actually played the media game well and used it for his own advantage by keeping ‘Rann’ in news.
The entire National Anthem controversy with the theme song ‘Jana Gana Mann Rann’ made quite a few heads turn. So much so that he was forced to chop it off eventually.
“It’s not ‘chopped off’ per se because it was not a standalone song which was being played on screen. It was a part of the background score and has now been replaced by the ‘Vande Mataram'”, defends Ramu, “However, instead of entire National Song being played, it would be just the two words- ‘Vande Mataram’ -that would be heard now. See, there was no point defending the song on and on. Enough noise was being made and it was best to replace it with something else and move on.”
Moving on to the issue of replacing his lead actress at the last moment, Ramu says, “The entire Raima Sen episode was blown out of proportion“, he shrugs away, “She was never even signed for the film so where does the matter of replacement come up? See, during the making of any film when you work on a script, there is a state where an actor suits a certain character. Later on when you again look at the same character though in a different way, you suddenly feel that the actor originally thought of didn’t quite suit the bill. This is why we had to look at a different actor and Neetu was roped in. It was as plain and simple as that.”