Mumbai: Despite his debut film "Kuch Kuch Hota" being a big hit, filmmaker Karan Johar says when he watches the movie today he finds it to be based on an "unusually silly theme".
Released in 1998, the romantic-drama starring Shah Rukh Khan was one of the blockbusters of the year.
"Kuch Kuch Hota Hai" chronicled the story of a mother, played by Rani Mukerji, who leaves eight letters for her daughter before her death, so that she can unite her father (Shah Rukh) with his best friend, enacted by Kajol, as she believed he loved her.
"Actually, 'Kuch Kuch Hota Hai' is a very unusually silly theme. Don't know what the mother wrote in those eight letters, how can a eight-year-old read that? But it was done with so much conviction, a mother has left eight letters, but kya likha hoga pehli, dusri chhitti may ki woh bachcha padh sake?" Johar said at the Jagran Film Festival in Mumbai, on Saturday evening.
"He (the hero) says, 'Zindagi may pyaar ek bar hota hai, shaadi ek bar hoti hai', but he himself has fallen in love twice, got married twice. Everything was wrong, but it was written with so much conviction that it made sense," the 44-year-old director said.
Johar said he was 24 when he wrote the film and was inspired by the cinema of Raj Kapoor, Yash Chopra among others.
"There was some innocence in films of those times, when we used to say 'pyaar dosti hai, love is friendship'. I have made a film on the same theme but have updated its tonality... That film ('Kuch Kuch...') had an organic innocence," he said.
"I was 24 when I wrote that film... But I can't write the same film now. When I see 'Kuch Kuch Hota Hai' today or 'Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham' I myself wonder, 'Why did I write this, how did I write this, from where these thoughts came to my mind?" he said.
The "My Name is Khan" helmer said he often gets stumped when people ask him questions regarding the characters in the film, ranging from Shah Rukh's profession to just how easily his character fell in love with Kajol's post interval.
"Somebody asked me what was the profession of Shah Rukh in the film and I had no idea! I said he had a business. The man asked, what kind of business he had that he had so much time to go to a summer camp for one month? Once Shabana (Azmi) ji called me after watching the film and said, 'What is this, when she was not beautiful, love didn't happen, but the moment she turned beautiful, wore saree, grew long hair, love happened? What do you want to say?' I just said 'Sorry. I have no justification'," he said.
Johar said same is the case with his multi-starrer "Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham" which featured megastar Amitabh Bachchan, Jaya Bachchan, Shah Rukh, Kajol, Hrithik Roshan and Kareena Kapoor.
The director said he thought he was making a "Ramayan of family films", but the film followed a similar pattern of "Kuch Kuch Hota Hai".
"If you watch 'Kabhi Khushi...' it is the exact same format of 'Kuch Kuch...' The way it starts, from flashback, then the interval point. In fact, Hrithik Roshan is the baby Sanah of 'Kuch Kuch...," he said.
"It is the same screenplay, which I realised much later. That time I thought I was making epic, Ramayan of family films but is the same story of 'Kuch Kuch Hota Hai'," he added.