Old vs new - 'Teri Meri Kahaani' set designer in time warp

Jun 1, 2012 IANS

Mumbai, June 1 (IANS) Many production designers feel recreating the olden era for a period film is tougher than designing sets reflecting the modern era. But the experience turned out to be otherwise for Muneesh Sappel, who worked on sets based in three different time zones for "Teri Meri Kahaani".

"Making a period set and modern set is both tough. In a period set, your audience doesn't have much knowledge, so they ignore or oversee some mistakes. But in modern period, everyone knows, so it is tougher," Sappel told IANS.

Directed by Kunal Kohli, the film, starring Shahid Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra, is a love story spanning three different eras -- 1910, 1960, and 2012.

Sappel said it was important for him to understand his director's vision.

"Every time we work with a new person, it is important for us to understand his story because we help a director tell his story. I wanted to show Kunal Kohli's perspective. This was the biggest challenge," he said.

Sappel, who has earlier worked on films like "Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi" and "Bhoothnath", says proper research goes behind creating the right sets for a movie.

"You research the period. How the place was, which region are you talking about, how people stayed there, what kind of transport system, temples and then plan how we show it."

"We need to see what the film requires... so one can research on internet, see old films or see your own old films and try and improve the work," he added.

However, Sappel stressed on the fact that the scale of production design is directly proportional to a movie's budget.

"Sometimes we want to buy a Mercedes, but have money for Maruti. This is the challenge faced by cinema. You often design your character according to your budget. This is the magic of cinema. You have to work according to budget so that you manage the film well. We did this in 'Teri Meri Kahaani' also," he said.

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