As long as cinema is alive, Yash Chopra would be remembered as the man who opened the window for the fans of cinema to explore countries, which he chose for his romantic sagas. He could have been inspired by Dev Anand in chosing for these locations as romance with reference to locations has its own mystique and enigma. Here is a tribute to Yash Chopra through these locations via the films that became the talking point:
KABHI KABHIE and NOORIE: While KABHI KABHIE explored the changing seasons in Kashmir through the landscape it was in NOORIE, that Yash Chopra brought the romance associated with Dal Lake in an evocative manner after a long time. Big B and Rakhee against the backdrop of the cushion of Chinar leaves exchanging romantic notes, and Poonam Dhillon in the shikara weaving the strands of romance are images that underline and accentuate romance.
SILSILA: The backdrop of tulips of Netherlands against which Amitabh Bachchan and Rekha cuddle up to 'Dekha Ek Khwab to ye silsile hue', indeed, was a dream cum true for those stuck with wanderlust, as this facade of the Netherlands was hitherto not opened in such big detail as it was done through SILSILA. Incidentally, it was Big B who had suggested about this location to Yash Chopra.
CHANDNI: CHANDNI was a romantic tribute to Switzerland and the manner in which, the locations were chosen the landscape of Switzerland was woven into the narrative became, the catalyst for the authorities to name a lake after Yash Chopra in Switzerland, and he was also conferred honorary citizenship.CHANDNI also was a film that used locations of Delhi in a big way and initiated the process of using Delhi as a location thence.
LAMHE and DIL WAALE DULHANIYA LE JAYENGE: LAMHE was the film where the city of LONDON, its street life, its castles was explored in a big detail. It was in all probability the first time that a grape crushing ceremony became a part of the Indian cinematic oeuvre; remember the scene where Anil Kapoor and Sridevi are crushing the black grapes.
The saga of exploring London that started with LAMHE in conjunction with revisiting Switzerland was taken to new heights through DDLJ. DDLJ was also the first film, after a long time that explored the countryside of Punjab in its pristine glory and thenceforth it formed a part of nearly all YRF films.
VEER ZAARA: VEER ZAARA is a tribute by Yash Chopra to his motherland, the undivided Punjab that included Himachal Pradesh as also Pakistan where he was born, and the attention to detail that went into made it one of the most vibrant films underlining the spirit of Punjabi at through landscape, food habits as also through interactions.
DHOOM: Mumbai-Pune Highway the first expressway that was built in India formed the backdrop of the film and the rugged terrain, was covered in succinct detail through DHOOM and it set the pace for exploring such new modern landmarks in the country.
KABUL EXPRESS: Were it not for the spirit of Yash Chopra KABUL EXPRESS could not have been shot in the strife torn Afghanistan, and it gave a distinct message to the world that Kabul has indeed been a terrain that needs to be explored.
EK THA TIGER: The last super duper hit from the Yash Raj Films banner was a film, that chose Ireland as its location apart from Istanbul and it was the first film which explored Ireland in such detail, prompting the authorities to officially associate themselves with ETT.
JAB TAK HAI JAAN: It indeed is fortuitous that the saga of a romance that characterized Yash Chopra and which began in a predominant manner with KABHI KABHIE, blossomed through London in scores of films had to culminated with JTHJ, which is again a romance set in modern times with Kashmir and London as the backdrop.
The vision and the dare to dream to underline the outreach of cinema for the fans, one hope would continue to be the guiding motif of the YRF banner for all times to come.