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Sonam: I Hate Luv Storys has plenty of masala

Last updated on: June 30, 2010 12:18 IST

'I Hate Luv Storys has plenty of masala'

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Arthur J Pais in New York

Sonam Kapoor, who has two back to back releases, isn't worried that the audiences could feel they are seeing too much of her.

It is a rather unusual situation for her to have one film I Hate Luv Storys to be followed by Aisha, which her sister Rhea produced, and was directed by a first-timer Rajshree Ojha, she admits.

I Hate is also the first film by director Puneet Malhotra.

"I Hate Luv Storys is based on an original screenplay about a middle class girl and her love journey," she says. "Aisha is a coming of age story based on a classic novel (Emma by Jane Austen) in which I play an upper middle class girl."

She accompanied Imran Khan to London and Dubai to promote I Hate .

The movies follow her debut film Saawariya which was released three years ago and Delhi-6 which came out two years ago. Both films did not do well at the box office but there is good buzz for her new films.

"I loved the script the I Hate Luv Storys the moment I looked at it and the way Puneet narrated it," she says. "It was extremely unpretentious, very tightly structured and full of smart dialogue."

 "I needed to work on a film that was simple and yet smart and entertaining," she continues. "The film needed to have a big heart too."


Image: A scene from I Hate Luv Storys

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'I never want to be unfair to a director'

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For Karan Johar, the film's producer, a good market has started growing in the past decade for smaller movies, especially with the expansion of multiplexes.

"We did better business with Wake Up Sid than we expected, and now we have a lovely film by a young film-maker," he said a few months ago when he was in New York to launch the international director's edition of My Name Is Khan.

Johar, who has admired Sonam even before her first film was released, agrees with a reporter that she is one of the most alluring and luminous artists in Indian cinema. A reporter suggests that she is the Waheeda Rehman of our generation who has not got her due.

You can compare her potential to any actress of the golden era that included Meena Kumari and Nargis, says her Delhi-6 director, Rakeysh Omprakash Mejhra.      

Sonam, who worked with Ranbir Kapoor on her first film, and with Abhishek on Delhi-6 says that she had wanted to work with Imran Khan for over two years.

"When Puneet mentioned he was going to meet with Imran," she continues, "I called him immediately and started telling him what a wonderful script Puneet has written."

 She also hastens to add that she would have accepted the I Hate proposal never mind who was going to be her co-star.

"I am a director's artist,' Sonam, who began her career in films as a second unit director for the hit film Black five years ago, asserts. "I never want to be unfair to a director."


Image: A scene from I Hate Luv Storys

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'I only work on a film if I enjoy the script and the director has a vision'

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She says she doesn't feel that she has to do many films a year to prove her versatility.

"I love to do just about two films in a year," she says. "And if each script is compelling, maximum three films."

If one overextends one's talent, "everybody gets the wrong end of the stick."

She has not changed her mind in the last four years what kind of films she is looking for. "I only work on a film if I enjoy the script and the director has a vision."

In the case of Aisha, she asked her father Anil Kapoor to produce the film. It is the first time she has ever asked a big favour from him.

Even then the casting was left to her sister and her father, with the active involvement of Ojha. Abhay Deol plays the lead in the film.


Image: A scene from I Hate Luv Storys

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'Puneet knows that a film that is aesthetically satisfying can also reach the masses'

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I Hate Luv Storys is being distributed by UTV whose big budget film Raajneeti has emerged as one of the biggest hits in the last six months. Its projected gross in North America is $1.6 million.

If I Hate does half that business, it would be considered a big hit. UTV also released Imran's debut film Jaane Tu...Ya Jaane Na two years ago. The movie was a smash hit in India and had more than a decent run abroad including a $620,000 grossing run in North America.

So what has she taken from the two directors of her new films?

"Both know extremely well what they are doing," she says. "Puneet has a big vision and knows that a film that is aesthetically satisfying can also reach the masses. Rajshree too is a person with a vision. She too is open minded, gentle and kind."


Image: A scene from I Hate Luv Storys

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'I even have a song in a sari'

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Does she think I Hate will appeal to audiences in smaller cities and towns?

"It has plenty of masala," she says. "It has songs, laughter and pure fun. While it is an original love story, it can appeal to anyone who has a romantic heart in any part of India."

"I even have a song in a sari,' she adds with a chuckle.


Image: A scene from I Hate Luv Storys

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