It’s been fifteen years since Shah Rukh and Preity Zinta’s ‘Veer-Zaara’ released, and actress Rani Mukerji had some very interesting details to share about the film. She disclosed how they made fun of Shah Rukh Khan in his older getup, and how the entire film set was actually a food fest!
Rani Mukerji said that she remembered seeing Shah Rukh Khan in his old avatar, which was ‘awkward’ for both of them. This is because she found romancing him to be much easier, and thus, she and he would actually burst out laughing on set!
Before this I had always romanced him and in this film he had to look at me with the imagery of a daughter and I had to look at him as a father figure, which was a bit tough. Romancing Shah Rukh is much easier. So, I think that camaraderie that we had made us burst out laughing a lot of times. Much to the annoyance of Adi and Yash uncle, because they would be like, “You got to concentrate on the shot,” and Shah Rukh and me would start our giggle fit, and it would never stop.
Talking about the ‘master’ – Yash Chopra, she said it was an experience in itself to work with the director. He was a break from other directors that Rani had previously worked with, the reason behind, unlike others, he would never see the monitor.
His greatness was that he would never see the monitor! He was always behind the cameraman watching us and okaying the shots. This was very new for me, because the directors who I had worked with, used to be just very close to the monitor – because that became the new age thing to do.
She adds that this unique idea was probably the reason why he managed to get such great work out of the actors!
When I shot with Yash uncle, I realised that how they (such iconic filmmakers) must be actually taking out work from actors because they were constantly looking at us standing next to the camera, calling for the shots. That was something really, incredibly special.
Rani Mukerji loved the director’s method of work, but she says Yash Chopra held a special place in every actor’s heart. This was due to his love for food, which he passed on to his cast and crew while on set. She said, “He was the only director who wanted to feed us all the time to make sure we were happy and laughing!”
She further called Veer Zaara a ‘food fest’ and revealed the sumptuous delicacies that the actors would sample. “There used to be chat on the sets like everyday, there was aloo paratha and white makhan – it was a food fest. Veer-Zaara for me I just remember it as a food fest throughout!”