Friday 10 June 2011
Choregrapher-turned-filmmaker Farah Khan is looking to shed some kilos and taking up workshops ahead of her acting debut in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Shirin Farhad.
«I want to tone down. I think I will also want to lose some weight. But I will start this in August. As knowing me … by the time the movie starts I would have finished toning and would be back to eating again. I guess it is very tough. Not eating is not a good option», Farah, who is playing the leading lady in Bhansali’s home production, said. On what other preparations she is doing for the film, Farah said: «I will be doing workshops. I think I will know my script inside out in sometime, I will know all dialogues. Also, I will have to spend some more time with my Parsi relatives to gather accent right which I have lost. I won’t be taking acting classes for it.»
When asked about her reaction when the acting offer came to her, the 46-year-old said: «I was shocked and not pleasantly surprised. I was like what are you saying … what is happening. He (Sanjay) called me directly saying he wants to come home to see me and my babies and that he wants to tell me something. I thought he will ask me to do a song in his film or something. When he told about it (acting) it was absolute shocker for me and for the first two-three days I was in denial. But they were very serious for it», Farah said.
Farah will be sharing screen space with actor Boman Irani who will essay the role of her husband in the film. «Boman is very sweet and has promised me that he is going to do a lot of reading with me so that when we go on sets. We know our dialogues. If you know your dialogues before hand half of your job is done. But I don’t want to be so rehearsed or else the spontaneity goes off», Farah said.
Directed by Bela, sister of Bhansali, Shirin Farhad is the love story of a Parsi couple. The film is expected to go on floors this October. The title of this story is obviously a nod to the famous epic poem Khosrow and Shirin (خسرو و شیرین) which is found in the great epico-historical poems of Shahnameh and which is based on historical figures that were elaborated and romanticized by later Persian poets. Variants of the story were also told under the titles Khosrow and Farhad and Farhad and Shirin. Although the story was known before Nezami Ganjavi (1141-1209), it was brought to its greatest romantic height by him. Unlike the Shahnameh, which focuses on the history, kingship and battles of Khosrow, Nezami decided to focus on the romantic aspect of the story.
When the Seljuq Sultan Tugrul II requested a love epic from the poet without specifying the subject further, Nezami picked on the story of lovers Khosrow and Shirin, a theme set in his own region and based on at least partly historical facts, through an aura of legend already surrounded it. Nezami himself considered it the sweetest story in the world.
It is believed to be one of the better works of Nezami. His first wife Afaq (آفاق) died just after it was completed. Many versions of Nezami’s work have been retold. The story has a constant forward drive with exposition, challenge, mystery, crisis, climax, resolution, and finally, catastrophe.
Khosrow and Shirin depicts the love of Sassanian king Khosrow II towards an Armenian princess, Shirin (a nestorian christian from Khuzestan in the reality). It recounts the story of King Khosrow’s courtship of Princess Shirin, and the vanquishing of his love-rival, Farhad, by sending him on an exile to Behistun mountain with the impossible task of carving stairs out of the cliff rocks. Shirin eventually consents to marry Khosrow after several romantic and heroic episodes, including his rescue of her from a lion by killing the animal with his bare hands.