Back in 1996 the Hollywood comedy-drama, JACK, directed by GODFATHER fame Francis Ford Coppola, had master actor Robin Williams playing a school going child, diagnosed with an exaggerated form of Werner syndrome, an aging disease. The film could not quite score at the box-office, despite the presence of such big names.
Cut to Bollywood 2009, and we have the mighty Amitabh Bachchan essaying the role of a witty 13-year old boy with an extremely rare genetic defect that causes accelerated ageing, a Progeria like syndrome. Mentally, he is a normal child, but physically, he looks six times older.
As always the slight similarity was enough to set the tongue's wagging about the Balki directed PAA being inspired by Coppola's JACK. So is it the case? NO sir. The two are as different as chalk and cheese!
At the first instance, the look of the main protagonist Auro (Amitabh Bachchan) is something unbelievable. We can bet that even Amitabh Bachchan's biggest fan could not have guessed that it was him, had it not been disclosed. The transformation is astonishing and make up artists have done an amazing job. On the other hand Robin William looks like Robin Williams in JACK! Confused? Well what we mean is that no great efforts have been taken to get any facial transformation and it is just a clean cut Robin in a uniform with school bag. Additionally the way the 6 feet plus 'Lambu ji' (Big B's early day title) has been photographed using top angle camera perspective; his height has been drastically reduced to that of a child. We will not waste our time on Bachchan being brilliant, but have to inform that India's top trade expert and film critic has predicted that Big B will sweep most of the awards this year.
In addition to what we have said above, Abhishek Bachchan, playing the pa to Aura in PAA, says (when questioned about JACK inspirations in PAA) that unlike the Hollywood film, there are very strong father-son emotions that were missing in JACK!
That should, once and for all disinfect any similarity germ thoughts, we sincerely hope!