Yashraj becoming experimental

Aug 8, 2007 Subhash K. Jha

Mumbai, Aug 8 (IANS) With "Chak De India", Yashraj Films has finally gone experimental with its commercial entertainment. The movie signals a bolder, braver and more audacious phase in the production house's distinguished existence.

"Chak De India" is Shah Rukh Khan's first Yashraj outing without either Yash or Aditya Chopra directing him.

Instead of playing up King Khan's Rohit-Rahul-Raj image, US-returned one-experimental film-old director Shimit Amin has cast Shah Rukh in his most unorthodox image-defying role ever. As the red-eyed burnt-out coach of an all-girls' hockey team in "Chak De India", the superstar has neither songs nor a leading lady to reckon with.

Whenever Shah Rukh has tried something unexpected, for example Ashutosh Gowariker's "Swades", he has been greeted by a far-from-overwhelming audience response.

But Yashraj Films doesn't seem to be daunted by the possibility of the masses staying away from a film about an out-of-favour game. "Chak De India" is being released with the fanfare that is traditionally associated with the banner.

The other two big release of the banner this year would also push the envelope albeit glamorously.

Pradeep Sarkar's "Laga Chunri Mein Daag" moves ahead of the expected ambit by showing the eldest daughter of a respectable Brahmin family bending the rules of morality for the family's sake.

The last film that showed the daughter of the house taking to an unconventional profession to keep the kitchen fires burning was K.Balachander's "Aaina" in 1974. The film bombed despite a powerful plot and treatment.

The banner is also ready to release "Aaja Nachle" with 40-year-old Madhuri Dixit in the lead and the theatre as its background.

A source close to Yashraj said: "The banner is hoping that audiences today have matured beyond watching Shah Rukh as a lover-boy or cringing if Rani does something unthinkable."

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