Filmmaker Vidhu Vinod Chopra recently revealed an interesting piece of Bollywood trivia when he said that renowned filmmaker Sanjay Leela Bhansali did the choreography of his films "Parinda" and "1942: A Love Story". "Sanjay Bhansali was an editing student. He made a song in the institute (FTII), so I asked him 'who choreographed this song?' He said, 'I did it'. I told him to work with me. He has done choreography in 'Parinda' and in '1942: A Love Story'. He had that talent, which I noticed. I notice talent in everyone," declared Chopra, who also gave a break to Bhansali as an assistant director (in "Parinda") and as a writer (in "1942: A Love Story").
Chopra's "Parinda" in fact had proved to be a turning point for actors Anil Kapoor and Jackie Shroff upon release in 1989, and the director worked with a greenhorn Hrithik Roshan in his 2000 film, "Mission Kashmir". He launched actress Vidya Balan and director Pradeep Sarkar in Bollywood with his 2005 release, "Parineeta".
Chopra also gave Bollywood blockbuster maker Rajkumar Hirani his break in "Munna Bhai MBBS" (2003), and as producer backed Hirani superhits as "Lage Raho Munna Bhai", "3 Idiots", "PK" and "Sanju".
In "Shikara", Chopra launches two new faces, Aadil Khan and Sadia. Asked how he decided on these debutants, he said: "I was searching for an actor who had a deep voice like Amitabh Bachchan. Because this film's character is a poet, I was searching for that kind of a voice that would suit the character of the film. I felt that he (Aadil Khan) has a really good voice and that's how the journey started with him. I trained him for two years."
Talking about his heroine Sadia, Chopra said: "For the girl's part, I was searching for an actor like Nargis or Nutan because there is certain purity in these characters. Now, the problem is that people who want to enter films don't have that kind of purity on their faces because over the years, our cinema has changed. Actors need to look in a certain way and the innocence is gone."
Chopra added: "You rarely see innocence in the faces if young kids, women and boys who are coming into movies anymore, if you see their pictures. They do all kinds of things on their faces and bodies, its all fake and there is nothing real now. So, for me, I was looking for that real thing. Nowadays there are only 'kaagaz ke phool' (paper flowers) and there is no smell in those flowers."
"Shikara" releases on February 7.