BULLETT RAJA: Would Kolkata be third time lucky for Saif Ali Khan?

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Genes, one may agree to it or not, indeed play a vital ingredient in shaping up destiny. Saif Ali Khan is a living testimony to this maxim. He has genes of his Bengali mother Sharmila Tagore and fortuitously or otherwise, whenever Kolkata has been used as a background or a location in his film, Saif Ali Khan has struck gold, and it is both commercial acclaim as also the success at the box office.

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When Saif Ali Khan was going through a lean phase a PARINEETA came his way and made him into a star performer, PARINEETA being a period film that was shot through in Kolkata and adjoining locations of Kolkata. PARINEETA underlined the fact that indeed Saif could enact the role of a Bhadrolok Bengali, a class to which his mother belongs, with finesse.

One always wonders whether this could be the reason why when he became produced with LOVE AAJ KAL he used the lucky charm of Kolkataas a backdrop for his maiden venture. It could have been any city that may have been chosen by Saif Ali Khan for LOVE AAJ KAL but he choseKolkata and the location was used for quite a small duration but it was there and the lucky charm worked for him.

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BULLET RAJA would be his third film that has been shot extensively in Kolkata and to add an element of novelty to location, in all probability it could be for the first time after Balraj Sahni when he drove the man driven rickshaw for a film as he did in DO BIGHA ZAMIN, that a commercial star of the likes of Saif Ali Khan has pulled the cart, the differentiator being that here he is wooing his lady who is the passenger aka Sonakshi Sinha. Yes, in between an Om Puri also drove this man driven cart on the streets of Kolkata but that was an English film THE CITY OF JOY and not a mainstream Hindi film.

Who knows at a time when these rickshaws are slowly going out of vogue from the streets of Kolkata they could find a rebirth in the form of vehicle for the lovers on the vast grounds around Maidan and Victoria Memorial the favorite haunts of lovers of Kolkata. And if it does happen, Saif Ali Khan would be thankful to Tigmanshu Dhulia that he gave him an opportunity to associate in a way with major landscape of the city from which his mother Sharmila Tagore hailed aka Kolkata!

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