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Saturday, Oct 19, 2019

Vipul Shah defends Namastey London

The director claims that the film is not inspired by Purab aur Paschim. Hiren Kotwani tells more.

india Updated: Mar 30, 2007 18:56 IST
Hiren Kotwani
Hiren Kotwani

Not many gave Namastey London a chance since it was releasing at a time when the World Cup was going into round two.

But after India’s exit from the World Cup, the film stabilised at the box-office, according to Vipul Amrutlal Shah.

The film opened to mixed reactions.
The only mixed response was from the critics. That’s okay..they’re doing their job. The audience’s response has been mind-blowing.

India’s ouster from the World Cup has added to the film’s advantage. My distributors from Delhi, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh tell me that the first week’s collections have set a new record. The film has done well in the US, UK and Dubai.

Parallels to Purab aur Paschim can’t be denied.
If people see similarities to Purab aur Paschim, then I would attribute that to cynicism. How many people have seen Purab Aur Paschim? It’s a pattern in our industry to pull down someone if his film is doing well.

There are flaws in the film.. an elderly woman claims to have seen Katrina Kaif in her childhood, but Katrina says she’s never been to India? Or the “Cut, cut’”instruction in a scene?
Well, it could be that Katrina has been to India when she was a child but never travelled around. So she couldn’t possibly have memory of the trip.

As for the “Cut, cut” sound, it could have been overlooked in a sync sound film. But this is a dubbed film, so it couldn’t have gone in the final print. If it’s there, I’ll rectify it immediately. But I don’t think it is. There are cliches like a patriotic speech. And there’s a Punjabi hero who plays along to get his wife married to her lover.

When was the last time a speech on India was used in a film? I think it was by Manoj Kumar in Upkaar. Akshay Kumar’s character is that of a liberated guy..he doesn’t go and fight the other guy. But he hangs in to win her love. It requires courage to do that.

Do you think at 40, Akshay Kumar is perfect to play a bachelor lover boy?
I think he’s perfect for the part..and he has delivered. If we can show Aamir Khan playing a college graduate at 42 (Dil Chahta Hai), then we can surely have a 39-year-old Akshay playing a 28-year-old guy.

Lastly, Upen Patel’s character came across as half-baked.
Maybe you feel that waybecause he doesn’t do anything heroic. But that’s again following a norm, a cliché.

First Published: Mar 29, 2007 18:55 IST

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