If you laughed your guts out while watching Go Goa Gone, Raj and D.K won’t be an ordinary picture for you. And if Happy Ending‘s trailer is anything to go by, the spunk of the duo must have captivated your attention by now. Love them and love them even more, Koimoi caught up with the two to talk about how rom-coms are an abused genre, collaboration with Saif, dealing with his lateness and how this film begins where most love stories end.
Q) Every romantic comedy promises to be different. Yours a little more than others. Why Saif in this film? Hasn’t he done enough rom-coms to do it all over again?
Raj – We have shot one and half films with Saif till date. He is one of those unique actors who gives in to the character. He has no qualms about not looking like a hero. For him, what is primary is fitting the character to the tee. And that’s what works the best for us when it comes to Saif. Once he bought into Happy Ending, he loved it and did whatever the script demanded. we didn’t want to do just another simple rom-com. There had to be this little twist to the film. And it’s like a comedy of a romantic comedy. A line in the film says, ‘I have had a lot of love stories, it’s now time for Happy Ending.’ This was the place where we started.
D.K – The conversation about this film started right during Go Goa Gone. The reason why we thought he will be the perfect person is because Saif has done innumerable romantic comedies in his life, he is obviously the perfect person to make this one defining film which will take a dig at all the romantic comedies. He is in a position to talk about all the romantic comedies.
Q) And then there’s Govinda who wants to take over multiplexes. How did you guys think of Govinda?
DK – Govinda was our first choice when we were thinking of who should play Armaan. He lays a superstar in the film and he has got all larger than life ideas. He is a funny guy. The character had to be so full of himself, he knows the drill – what’s to be done and how it is to be done. I think all the filmy gyaan he gives sounds the best when comes from him.
Q) Romantic Comedy is the most used and abused genres. How difficult was it trying to make something of a different flavor, staying true to the same genre?
Raj – Romantic Comedy is the most ghisa pita genre. There is no scope to do a lot if one is taking themselves seriously. It’s all in the characterization afterall. But it mostly is, boy girl meets, boy girl fall in love, boy girl have differences, boy screws up usually, girl leaves, boy figures out life and gets the girl back. And there is a happy ending! But we start at happy endings and build it backwards. Taking such a strong genre, we tried to give a bonafide rom-com. We even stitched in some stereotypes, playing with the cliches.
D.K – You go by the rules sometimes and you break rules sometimes but the idea is to keep surprising. We know the rules, the point is to play with rules.
Q) How was it work with infamous later-latifs? Both Saif and Govinda are known to never reach on time.
Raj – (laughs) Yes. Saif is notorious. But Saif is so in love with what he has shot, that he will go that extra mile, to do more and more work with such zest, and love. It’s creative healthy filmmaking. Over-timing and lateness are both as funny and always came as a package during shoot.
D.K – (makes a kind face) But he tries. And he tries very hard to reach on time. But he is so happy with his performance. He rates it as his best acting job. He took an oath he will never be late again. Govinda was quite timely actually. His sabbatical and the new leaf started on a very disciplined note. He showed up on time and working late hours. He was so happy with his film. In a tailored comedy, he was liking the milieu. The deadpan nature, he was loving it.
Q) You have a tendency to jump genres. There is a lot in your limited repertoire. What’s up with Farzi? The cast is superbly enticing.
Raj – Yes, we don’t want to get typecast into anything. Farzi stars Shahid (Kapoor), Nawaz(-uddin Siddiqui) and Kriti Sanon. It’s something that is probably our best script. It’s solid plotline, great narrative, almost gritty but has its wicked satirical sense of humor. Fun way of looking at it. It’s set in a big world of crime. Shahid is a great fit. Farzi has Nawaz playing a very strong feature role. He is not a baddie just but he has a great full fledged role opposite Shahid. There is a gamut of brilliance and ofcourse the film is such that it will thrive on acting alone.
D.K – We are wearing to go. But what puts fire is that energy ‘What the hell am I doing today!’ We like discovering new things, trying new things! And yes it is a character driven film which can be a great film.
Q) Govinda has a set image with the audiences. And now it seems like an entire transformation. Did you incorporate any quintessential Govinda antics in the film?
D.K – That’s the beauty of it. That’s casting of Saif as Barees in Go Goa Gone. In a subtle humor but the loud, subtle contrast will make it funny. If used correctly, it is fun. Some old antics, we have kept in mind and used it here at right places. We don’t believe in casting people who are known to deliver good. Otherwise why would we have Ileana? We could have taken a Deepika who would have entered with her inbuilt chemistry with Saif.
Q) Saif’s character has hints of Hank Moody, hints of Richard Castle. Was their any referencing from these sitcoms at all?
Raj – Not at all. Many have asked me this. I have seen half a season and I don’t like it much. But only think worth taking from it, is only the nudity and explicit part of it. There is not any great picture in it. This movie was written a while ago and written in many versions.
D.K – I think the only similarity between Hank and Yudi is that they are both writers set in California. That’s about it. Rest of the film is about being jaded in love, facing creative limbo but lost his ability to write.