One was an iconic film of the Eighties, the other a fresh take. The old and new versions of Chashme Buddoor release on the same day — April 5

Remember how Siddharth (Farooque Shaikh) and Neha (Deepti Naval), during a date wonder how people in films just break into a song, that too in rhyme, before attempting an impromptu duet only to be laughed at by the regulars at the park?

Or that soapy detergent Chamko that helped love bloom between them? And the loveable slackers Jomo (Ravi Baswani) and Omi (Rakesh Bedi) who did their best to woo women on the streets of Delhi with very little luck?

Sai Paranjpye’s Chashme Buddoor is coming back to the big screen on April 5, the same day as David Dhawan’s remake of the film starring Ali Zafar, Siddharth, Divyendu Sharma and Taapsee Pannu (stepping into the shoes of Farooque Shaikh, Ravi Baswani, Rakesh Bedi and Deepti Naval, respectively).

“We will be releasing the film in about 40 screens around the country,” says Shiladitya Bora, who heads PVR’s Director’s Rare initiative. “We did the limited re-release of Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro last year. Encouraged by the response, we were in the process of curating a few more cult classics for re-release when we came to know that PLA Entertainment had started the restoration process for the original Chashme Buddoor.” There cannot be a better time for the re-release as something like this has never ever happened that the original film and the remake are releasing on the same day.”

But he’s quick to play down the clash. “It would be unfair to compare both releases as the new one will be a wide release across the country whereas the original film will be a limited release only in selected cities. The buzz will help both the films.”

“The restoration of Chashme Buddoor started with the realisation that the negative needed attention and was in danger of being lost forever,” says Jayshree Makhija of PLA Entertainment. “There is a whole new generation of filmgoers who may have seen the film on DVD and the small screen, if at all. An iconic Indian film of the Eighties with its tongue and cheek humour would have just remained a yesteryear memory had it not been for the restoration. It is PLA’s tribute to director Sai Paranjype’s sense of humour and the genius of looking at ordinary moments, situations and reactions, and bringing a smile by connecting with the audience... In Chashme Buddoor, ‘less is more’ (effective).”

The reclusive director of the classic was reportedly appalled that her subtle, slice of life, realistic film was handed over to David Dhawan, the master of loud, irreverent, sexist, slapstick comedy but this might be the best twist ever, since Dhawan’s revels in scenes of male bonding and one-upmanship as we have seen in his underrated comedies Deewana Mastana, Jodi No.1 and Mujhse Shaadi Karogi that saw Govinda-Anil Kapoor, Govinda-Sanjay Dutt and Salman Khan-Akshay Kumar take on each other in a battle of wits, respectively.

The Sai Paranjpye classic will release in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bangalore, Pune, Ahmedabad, Surat, Nagpur, Vadodara, Jaipur and Hyderabad with a simultaneous release in Dubai, while David Dhawan’s Golaith version will be in every other multiplex around the country. Who are you rooting for? More importantly, which will you be paying to watch?