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regular-article-logo Wednesday, 26 June 2024

Do Aur Do Pyaar director Shirsha Guha Thakurta: 'It is not a film about infidelity'

Starring Vidya Balan and Pratik Gandhi, the movie, an adaptation of Azazel Jacobs' 2017 American film The Lovers, is currently running in cinemas

PTI Mumbai Published 22.04.24, 09:59 AM
A still of Pratik Gandhi and Vidya Balan from Do Aur Do Pyaar

A still of Pratik Gandhi and Vidya Balan from Do Aur Do Pyaar

Infidelity is a "loaded term" and that's not what her film "Do Aur Do Pyaar" is about, says director Shirsha Guha Thakurta, who has delved into the realities of urban relationships in her feature debut.

"Do Aur Do Pyaar" follows Kavya and Ani, played by Vidya Balan and Pratik Gandhi, a married couple who falls back in love with each other despite indulging in extramarital affairs after a trip to Ooty brings back memories.

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Guha Thakurta, who has been an ad filmmaker for 15 years, said she has attempted to tell a story about growing out of love without attaching any connotation to it.

“It's not a film about infidelity, it's about love. If it's not working for you anymore, you’re in your right to find love where you do. The word infidelity has a connotation that is not really positive. Infidelity is a loaded term. We have tried to make sure people don't see it (infidelity) as something we are either promoting or calling it wrong or right,” the debutante director told PTI in an interview here.

“Urban relationships go through this (growing out of love). I don’t think we speak enough about what happens when love becomes old. These are interesting and important questions that we as society need to ask or accept what our reality is,” she added.

"Do Aur Do Pyaar", also starring Sendhil Ramamurthy and Ileana D'Cruz, released on Friday. The romantic comedy received good reviews from critics but got a slow start at the box office.

What is heartening, Guha Thakurta said, is that some people picked up on the nuances in the film.

"Some wrote that, ‘We don't judge any of them’. For me, that's a huge compliment because that was one of the biggest things we've tried,” the 40-year-old said.

“It was important to not make it sad and see the light heartedness of it, because it can get serious. The whole film shouldn't be like that. Then you're making some serious statements and people might not want to even watch it,” she added.

Guha Thakurta said the makers Applause Entertainment and Ellipsis Entertainment Production had already decided to cast Balan as Kavya when she boarded the film.

“They did have Vidya in mind. She had agreed to do it in principle. It was only when we had a locked script that she signed the film,” she said, adding Gandhi was cast to play Ani following a look test with Balan.

In "Do Aur Do Pyaar", while Kavya, a dentist, is having an affair with NRI photographer Vikram; Ani, who is an entrepreneur, is romancing an actor named Nora. The roles of Vikram and Nora are essayed by Ramamurthy and D'Cruz, respectively.

“We were nervous that a lot of people feel scared to be second lead to Vidya. But Ileana was thrilled to play something that is grey, and not too many people want to play the needy girlfriend. But she did it with believability, and you don’t get annoyed with her, you see her point of view.

“We did look at somebody who was not an NRI for Sendhil’s part. But Tanuj (Garg), who is one of the producers, knew Sendhil. He got in touch with him and made it happen. Once Sendhil said yes, we rewrote the character. He's a fantastic actor and extremely good looking. We wanted it that way,” the filmmaker said.

“Do Aur Do Pyaar” is an adaptation of Azazel Jacobs' 2017 American film “The Lovers”, featuring Debra Winger and Tracy Letts.

Guha Thakurta said the Hindi version differs slightly from the original.

“… Any relationship drama, when you change the country and culture, everything changes, we’ve also changed the age group of the couple,” she said, adding they reworked the story over the course of a year and a half.

“Do Aur Do Pyaar” was initially set to arrive in theatres on March 29 alongside “Crew”, starring Tabu, Kareena Kapoor Khan and Kriti Sanon. The makers later decided to change the release date to avoid the clash between two “women-oriented” films, said the director.

“We made the film one-and-half-year back and we never had a release date. The whole industry went through a kind of churn where nobody was going to theatres. Everybody was nervous about releasing a film then.

“Initially, the film was (supposed to be released) on March 29. At that time, ‘Crew’ was supposed to be released a week before. But when they (‘Crew’ makers) moved it to March 29, they (producers) didn’t want two women-oriented films to release on the same date. So, we moved it (release date) to April 19.”

Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.

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