Tranquility beams in the air as B-town's greatest on and off screen worshipper of family, tradition and celebration, Sooraj Barjatya speaks about his unconditional prem for Salman Khan, his unbreakable and unshakable idea of his cinema, the changing trends in Bollywood's marketing and distribution business, what makes PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO – the most awaited film and the 16 year old gap.
Why it took 16 years to reunite with Prem?
The idea was there in my mind since early nineties but I was busy doing TV, producing films and looking after other business activities of Rajshri. When you make a film it should be from heart and being a Salman Khan starrer in a Rajshri production our responsibility increases and am glad that the journey has being so beautiful. Am proud of Salman Khan for understanding, supporting and shaping my dream so wonderfully.
What makes you still so obsessed with joint families in times when we're seeing live–in relationships?
It is in my belief system in which I have grown. Times are changing but emotions remains the same. You can see in television - the families you see are part of our families. A joint family gives you security and we make films not for a single audience. We make films for the whole family to come relax and have a good time together. A different genre like action, thriller etc might be good for a section but my idea of cinema is family oriented and it brings more and more viewers.
MAINE PAYAR KIYA started a trend - family functions, weddings, even antakshari became so popular. What trend does PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO wants to set in?
Never made a film to set any trend. It just happened. We have always enjoyed those occasions in our family. MAINE PAYAR KIYA just incorporated it in its story and it worked. We followed it in HUM AAPKE HAI KAUN and HUM SAATH SAATH HAIN and the same tradition; trend will be seen in PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO.
'A joint family gives you security and we make films not for a single audience.'
Rajshri has also followed the trend of remaking its own classics - HUM AAPKE HAI KAUN (NADIYA KE PAAR), MEIN PREM KI DEEWANI HOON (CHITCHOR). Reports suggest PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO is a remake of 1968 Sanjeev Kumar starrer RAJA AUR RANK.
No truth in such stories. In fact, RAJA AUR RANK is not even our production. It's produced by L. V. Prasad's Prasad production. PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO is original.
Why more characters with grey shades in PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO. Even Salman Khan has a grey shade in one of his roles. Why corrupt the soft, loving, family, non-violent image of Prem set by you.
All is not right every time in our families. We have differences, fights, so those grey characters symbolize the negativity, evil, bad in ourselves that fail to understand the true values and traditions.
By the grandiosity and richness seen in the promos, it can be said that PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO is Rajshri's most lavishly made film.
Yes it is our most expensive film till date. The making, P & A has touched 100 crores.
It's a grand Diwali release and the market is upbeat speculating a 40 crore + day one. what are your expected figures.
Honestly, I am looking at maximum viewership not numbers.
'PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO is original. RAJA AUR RANK is not even our production.'
Fox Star is giving you the biggest release with 5000+ screens. This scenario is completely different from the way Rajshri distributed its films. You released films in selected screens first like MAINE PYAAR KIYA, HUM AAPKE HAI KAUN and then growing by the trend, increased the theaters. How healthy is this current trend?
Things change with time. People now plan the marketing and making of the film simultaneously. A trailer never runs a film. It's ultimately the film in the end that sustains the long run. Am very glad that Fox Star is giving it the biggest release and it's a good thing to catch maximum eyeballs. But ultimately it's the film that runs a film.
People are already expecting PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO to beat Salman Khan's BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN'S collections. As a mentor, friend and brother of Salman Khan what do you believe?
You will see a very different Salman Khan in PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO. It's emotions that always work in Bollywood. BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN mein toh usne maara nahi mar khaya. In PREM RATAN DHAN PAYO Salman Khan has given his best. Now it's time for the audience to react.
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