Sneak peek: Yash Raj’s Jab Tak Hai Jaan is a dream come true, says Katrina Kaif who teams up with Shah Rukh Khan for the first time
Katrina Kaif always had a grouse with Yash Raj Films. Even though she has worked with the banner in three films prior to Jab Tak Hai Jaan, which releases this Deepavali (November 13), she never really got to play the quintessential Yash Raj heroine. When she was called to do New York, she was disappointed that it was a dark political film, then came the mad comedy Mere Brother Ki Dulhan and finally the spy thriller-romance Ek Tha Tiger.
“I was fascinated when I watched the premiere of Veer Zarra and I immediately said to myself ‘I want to be in a film like that.’ Whenever I would receive a call from Adi (producer-director Aditya Chopra, Yash Chopra’s son), I would be thrilled to bits and would actually go to Mount Mary steps (in Mumbai) and pray that this be it — my big chance to work with Yashji and play the Yash Raj heroine. But it would be either something trivial or a role in another film and I would come back teary-eyed,” said the actor at the film’s cast’s first press conference post the sudden demise of its 80-year-old director and founder of Yash Raj Films — Yash Chopra. “Working in JTHJ was an unlikely dream-come-true.”
Katrina plays Meera, the quintessential Yash Raj heroine who is not just breathtakingly beautiful but also a powerful personality. The film also stars Anushka Sharma and it is the first time that Shah Rukh Khan and Katrina are working together.
The actor said that working with ‘Yash uncle’ was the best thing that could have happened to her. “I remember this particular shot that we were doing and I just couldn’t get the mood right and everyone, including Shah Rukh, kept trying to get me to relax. The worse thing was we had to do a quick shot since we had limited time. He actually just came close to us and started cracking jokes. And while everyone was worried about completing the shot in good time, we cracked up. He had the vision to realise that all I needed was some space and some calm.”
Katrina’s final song to be shot in true Yash Chopra style in Switzerland in a white chiffon sari that was specially handpicked from among 12 designed by Manish Malhotra has been cancelled and she rues it. “Yes, he had told us that it would be a grand picnic in Switzerland and I was very excited about shooting in his signature style. He had personally come and picked out what I should wear too. Of course, I am upset but that’s destiny. I don’t think it’s going to be the same without him.”
While the two lead actors were mocking each other throughout the media meet; SRK complaining that it was too difficult even for a ‘seasoned romantic’ like him to handle two ladies together and Katrina lamenting that he hadn’t said anything worthwhile about her unlike for Anushka (Sharma, who also stars in the film); Katrina couldn’t keep herself back from praising her co-star when asked to elaborate about her working experience with this Khan. “Considering that he has used only ‘genteel’ to describe me, I think I will go with good,” she said, adding, “On a serious note, Shah Rukh is not just a good actor but is also a thorough gentleman. He actually stands up when someone enters the room and opens the door and pulls the chairs at the table. While acting, he will give his best emotions even if he is giving only a back shot so that his co-star gets the right cue!”
As for his romantic quotient, Katrina was clueless. While co-star Anushka said that he smelt great, Kat seemed a tad embarrassed or had really nothing to contribute. But she got the shutterbugs in a tizzy by getting really close to SRK and declaring, “Yes, he smells okay.” The actor is enjoying a good phase in Bollywood with her last film Ek Tha Tiger with Salman Khan going on to garner revenues of Rs. 200 crore plus and her next film being DHOOM 3: Back In Action opposite Aamir Khan.