Weeks before its release, Jab We Met is running high on the gossip meter for its lead pair. Cut to director Imtiaz Ali:
■ Was it tough to keep Shahid Kapur and Kareena Kapoor together?
Not at all. It was the reverse. I’ve never had such an easy time with actors before.
■ Wasn’t the news of their split disturbing?
I spoke to Shahid and Kareena after the news broke. Most of our work was over by then. Show me one profession in which there aren’t any hazards. They’re youth icons. They’re paying the price of being popular. I think they have to accept this. I’m sure they’ve had a tough time handling the situation. People will talk — some of it may pain too.
■ According to trade pundits, the news of their break up is a publicity gimmick.
Every one of us involved with this film has too much pride to stoop to that level. I will not do something as low as this. Our publicity strategy would have never involved rumours. That puts us in a bad light.
■ The Shahid- Kareena pair hasn’t worked so far.
I was interested in them because they suited the roles. When I met them for the first time, I felt they had great chemistry. All the films they have done in the past have not been about their chemistry at all. It was my duty to translate their chemistry on screen. Their on-screen record was not a deterrent but an opportunity for me.
■ Please elaborate on the title Jab We Met.
It was Shahid’s idea. Although I came across several ideas, I loved this one .
■ A little bit about the film?
It’s a romantic comedy. It’s about two strangers who meet in a train and make a difference to each other’s lives.We shot the film in Khandala, Lonavla, parts of Punjab, Manali, Shimla, Rajasthan and Mumbai. It’s been quite a trip.