Student of the Year 2 has released and is doing well amongst its target audiences. With kids and teenagers rooting for it and enjoying the make-believe campus world that has been set up by director Punit Malhotra, the filmmaker is happy to have delivered with the second installment of the franchise that has been put together by Karan Johar. More so, since he was on a sabbatical of sorts after the non-performance of Kareena Kapoor Khan and Imran Khan starrer Gori Tere Pyaar Mein .
“I won’t deny that I was depressed after Gori Tere Pyaar Mein,” confesses Punit, who had started his career with a hit outing I Hate Luv Storys, “I went to the drawing board to understand what really went wrong. On the other hand, Karan wanted me to get going soon enough and make Student of the Year 2. I was hunting for the right script to come back stronger. There was this whole journey that I went through.
In the middle of this I was doing a lot of other work, basically ads and all. There wasn’t any break per se as work on Student of the Year 2 started back in 2014 itself. We consciously worked towards it making various drafts and bringing in the right changes to make it more entertaining. There was a lot of hard work, blood, sweat and tears that went into making the film.”
The challenge was to make something that was similar to the first installment but still different in the core story.
“Actually to begin with, I had written a completely different film. However, just three months before the shooting, I pulled the plug. I realized that what was on paper was a completely different film and not really in the same space that was created by Karan in Student of the Year. See, that film had a loyal audience in youngsters who wanted to see larger than life college space. I had to make something that took forward that legacy with the same ethos, same branding and same world. I didn’t want to deviate into a different world and story,” says Punit.
Even if that meant pushing ahead the film’s release plans, there was no heartbreak or heartburn involved as Karan Johar stood besides Punit as a strong pillar of support.
“I genuinely believe that one person who is between me and failure is Karan,” smiles Punit, “When he is around then there are no questions asked. He gives you a lot of freedom and liberty to get your creative juices running and then gives very valid suggestions when you share your ideas with him. I don’t think anyone else in the world could have done that for me when it came to making this film. He gave me real good support.”
Now that the Tiger Shroff, Ananya Pandey and Tara Sutaria film is running in theatres, one waits to see how audiences at large give this effort by Punit Malhotra a nod of approval in days to come as well.