Filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali says his Hrithik Roshan-Aishwarya Rai starrer Guzaarish, which will be shot in Goa in July and August to capture the melody of the monsoons and the romance of the place, is actually a tribute to singing legend Lata Mangeshkar.
"I learnt direction from her voice. Guzaarish is my tribute to Lata-ji's artistry," Bhansali told IANS.
As Bhansali returns to Goa after his directorial debut in Khamoshi: The Musical, he has formulated what can only be called the complete homage to the most flawless voice. Every nuance and curve in the intense love story is inspired by the songs of Lata.
The screenplay too is inspired by Lata's passion for excellence.
Last week Bhansali met the singing legend to seek her blessings before plunging into Guzaarish.
"But it was like a whole eternity passing by for me. I had always been afraid of meeting her. I'd always pass by her home in Peddar Road and hope for a glimpse of my goddess on her balcony. But to actually come face to face with her was a scary thought. One doesn't hobnob with one's god. But before Guzaarish I had to meet her," Bhansali said.
"I just wanted to sit and gaze at her. I realised in person she's as magical as she is in her singing. There's something other-worldly about her, a quality I haven't encountered in anyone else in my life," he added.
Hrithik and Aishwarya have been chosen to play the passionate lovers in Guzaarish because to Bhansali they epitomise the physical and spiritual beauty of Lata's voice.
Lata too is a big fan of Bhansali's films and says she is fortunate that she is the source of inspiration behind such a talented director's film.
"Even I had heard that he makes his singers hear my songs over and over again before making them sing. I've always been a big fan of Sanjay's films, specially 'Black'. I remember watching the Filmfare Awards in the year of 'Black'. Every time the nominations were announced I prayed for 'Black' to win. And it did. If I'm a source of inspiration to him then I count myself fortunate," said Lata.