‘Teri Meri Kahaani’: Priyanka-Shahid’s epiphany of a hundred years!

Ananya Bhattacharya

As the gorgeous glam queen, dressed in a green outfit, and the exceedingly charming, boyishly handsome man in a white shirt, denims and converse shoes walked in, the Zee News office resembled a fairground, overflowing with fans and onlookers who thirsted for a glance of the actors who had just walked in. Priyanka Chopra and Shahid Kapoor, with their entourage of about half-a-hundred people and half that number of bodyguards, held people spellbound for long after they were gone. The experience was one that deserved to be frozen in time.

The actors, along with director Kunal Kohli and others, dropped by for the promotion of ‘Teri Meri Kahaani’ recently, and they spoke – at length – about the film, the challenges that they had to face during the process of making the film, and about a lot more.

On being asked about the way ‘love’ has been dealt with in the film, Shahid spoke about the contemporary condition of commitments and relationships. Said the actor, “The film necessarily portrays the ‘confused state of mind’. On social networking sites, you will find most people’s relationship status as ‘It’s complicated’. I think that is very relevant for how the situation is nowadays. People fall in love easily and break up, all within two hours.”

Director Kunal Kohli chirps in, “I love tackling such issues in my films. I’m a diehard fan of love stories, and I always want people to be able to connect with my films.”

Priyanka Chopra, who was listening to Kapoor and Kohli thus far, adds, “I believe in love, and a lot. During the course of shooting for this film, there’s something that I’ve observed. We’ve attempted to recreate almost an entire century – from 1910 to 2012. The revelation that I’ve been treated to is that every single thing has changed during this time – the ways of communication have changed, the way people shied away from talking about love earlier, waiting for a glimpse of your lover from the window to the virtual Skype windows – everything has changed. Something that has remained intact in this long duration of a hundred years is the emotion of love. It doesn’t matter whether the way people talk changes, or the era changes, love doesn’t change.”

The film deals with three different eras - 1910, 1960 and 2012. And the three characters each that the actors have played are all distinct and well fleshed out. They conducted extensive research and emerged strong with their respective roles. According to Shahid, “Every era has a flavour of its own. And Kunal has very deftly captured all the three eras on his camera. The Javed of 1910 is shameless (grins), and Kunal has made sure that he leaves no stone unturned in creating the character impeccably. I have tried to understand Javed, and there’s a Javed in every guy! (laughs).”

Kunal adds, “I have merely shown him the direction, and Shahid has sprinted off on the way – I think romance comes very naturally to him.”

Shahid’s 1960 doppelganger Govind loves films. Says the actor, “Govind always talks about films, he is an ardent film lover. We have tried to recreate the era of Shammi Kapoor. The little nuances that Shammi ji infused into his films, his distinctive dancing styles and all – I have attempted to model Govind on those lines.”

Moving on to his avatar of 2012, Kapoor says, “The character of 2012 is very contemporary. The three different takes on life that Kunal has come up with, I have tried to portray them honestly. All three characters are different versions of me.”

For Priyanka, playing more than one role seems an easy task – given the fact that she holds the Guinness World Record for playing the maximum number of roles in a film. Chopra’s ‘What’s Your Rashee?’ saw her in twelve different manifestations, and the three roles in ‘Teri Meri Kahaani’ doesn’t appear intimidating in the face of the feat that she has been able to achieve. The mesmerising diva, speaking about her roles in the film, says, “It isn’t as if I haven’t faced any problem while playing out the roles in this film – every role is a challenge in itself. However, in ‘Teri Meri Kahaani’, the characters were very well etched out. I did have to embellish them a bit, but it wasn’t a nerve-wracking exercise. The idea is to entertain the audience, not bombard them with too much of serious stuff!”

The duo portrays three pairs of lovers – all in two hours. ‘Teri Meri Kahaani’ essentially slips from one era to another, and circumscribes a period of an entire century. Kunal Kohli’s story-telling capabilities added to Shahid-Priyanka’s crackling on-screen chemistry, the audience is waiting expectantly for ‘Teri Meri Kahaani’ to appear on the big screens. With a pair as feisty and energetic as Shahid and Priyanka, things can seldom go wrong!

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