Bollywood actors Kriti Sanon and Varun Sharma of ‘Fukrey’ fame are fast becoming the go-to talents for wacky comedies set in small Indian towns.
Sanon’s turn as the feisty Bitti Mishra in the quirky comedy ‘Bareilly Ki Barfi’ and her role in the recent hit ‘Lukka Chuppi’ — where she opts for a live-in relationship with her boyfriend (Kartik Aaryan) — stand proof to her growing popularity in that genre.
Sharma, who played the cheeky Chuccha in the hilarious ‘Fukrey’ series, will give her company in the comic caper, ‘Arjun Patiala’. If he’s in a frame, a joke isn’t far way.
“Making people smile makes me feel good from the inside ... It’s a space that people love me in and I like that,” said Sharma in an interview with Gulf News tabloid!. He plays a high-ranking cop Onida Singh in this comedy.
“Come to think of it, I have never played roles with popular names like Rahul, Ajay or Raj ... It’s always names like Onida, Chuccha or Bhooshit. And that’s a good sign. I feel blessed when I get roles with some quirky names now,” said Sharma with a laugh.
“The funny part is that I have never suggested any of my on-screen names that have gone to become so popular,” he added.
But there’s more to the movie than just their names.
As their new comedy ‘Arjun Patiala’ readies for release in the UAE on July 25, Gulf News tabloid! gleaned a few details from the actors about their latest film which’s up against Kangana Ranaut’s ‘Judgementall Hai Kya’ at the cinemas ...
FIVE THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT ARJUN PATIALA
1. ‘Arjun Patiala’ is a comedy that revolves around the lives of two small-town Sikh cops, played by Punjabi actor-singer Diljit Dosanjh and comedian Sharma, and crime journalist Ritu Randhawa, played by Kriti Sanon.
“It’s an out and out comedy. But the comedy that you see in Arjun Patiala is done in a slightly different way. It’s a spoofy take on a comedy and the clichés that are usually associated with funny films,” said Sanon in an interview with Gulf News tabloid!.
All hell breaks loose when the trio decide to make a comic film for real. Sharma describes ‘Arjun Patiala’ as a comedy within a comedy and a creative experiment that producers Maddock Films (‘Stree’ and ‘Go Goa Gone’) excel in. Although Sharma plays a police officer, Onida Singh, it isn’t a routine cop film, says the actor.
“Arjun Patiala is highly experimental and isn’t your regular comedy … It’s a film inside a film. You will hear terms which are familiar to us industry folks. We talk about how a mandatory song sequence has to be there in a film and the quirky problems that come our way as we try to make a comedy within a budget,” said Sharma in a separate interview.
2. Spoofs are a familiar fixture in Hollywood landscape, believes Sanon. But in Bollywood it’s an unexplored terrain and she hopes that Arjun Patiala will fill that void. “Think of Hollywood movies like ‘Scary Movie’ series or ‘I Know What You Did Last Summer’… That sort of an attempt has never been made here in Bollywood before. When I heard the script I found the script very funny. I also realised that they were doing the comedy in a different manner. The format was different. Every cliche that you see in this film will make you laugh.”
There’s also a strong story, believes Sharma.
“Every character in this film has a back story that’s interesting,” said Sharma.
3. Sanon claims she never takes herself too seriously and more people should do the same.
“Perhaps, that’s why I love comedies. It’s a space that I absolutely love watching and performing in. I love making people too, though it isn’t always easy to make people laugh,” said Sanon.
4. Prepare to turn nostalgic as you watch this comedy filled with ‘80s references and influences, says Sharma. His first name, Onida, in ‘Arjun Patiala’, was a popular TV brand during that era.
“I was born in Jalandhar, a city in Punjab. My first TV was Onida and so the role was an instant connect ... There’s also a funny back story to why I am go by this quirky name.”
5. ‘Arjun Patiala’, directed by Rohit Jugraj, marks Sanon’s return to comedies set in small towns.
“It’s a coincidence that I have been a part of comedies back-to-back. Next month, I also have ‘Housefull 4’ releasing. I want to excel in every space and not just comedies though,” said Sanon.
For Sharma, ‘Arjun Patiala’ spells another comedy to stack his career catalogue.
“Comedy is something that I enjoy doing … I am never going to leave that space. I don’t over-analyse or calculate too much while taking on roles. I am not scared of being typecast, because the biggest achievement for an actor is to get cast in good films and good scripts, good banners. I am not worried about being stereotyped as long as I am cast in projects,” said Sharma, who counts Govinda as his comic idol.
Don’t Miss It!
‘Arjun Patiala’ is out in the UAE on July 25.
“I will watch ‘Arjun Patiala’ and ‘Judgementall Hai Kyaa’ in the cinemas. In today’s times it is impossible for films to get a clean slate at the cinemas ... If the script and content is good, even if you have ten films releasing on the same day, it will work. It’s the honesty of a film that will shine through. Whatever noise around films don’t matter if content is not there,” said Varun Sharma, when asked about his comedy being the underdog when compared to Judgementall Hai Kya.