Celebrity Interview: Ravi Chopra ...

By IndiaFM News Bureau

imageIf you

have to re-establish the golden era of the Indian cinema, what else could be

the best way than to re-release an all time classic like Naya Daur. And if this

black n white film is beauty-personified with colour, it will breathe in a new

life into this masterpiece.

This is exactly what filmmaker Ravi Chopra has done to his father, B

R Chopra's work of art which starred Dilip Kumar, Vyjayantimala, Ajit,

Jeevan and Johny Walker. B R Films will now be releasing Naya Daur in

colour format with 5.1 stereophonic sound.

In an exclusive interview to IndiaFM, Ravi Chopra talks about why he

thought of re-releasing Naya Daur in colour, his memories from the film's

shoot and his dream to colour some of the golden classics by Raj Kapoor,

Bimal Roy and Guru Dutt.

Why did you choose to color Naya Daur?

Basically, I thought it is one of the most beautiful films made by my

father which I consider as a classic. I used to feel that lot of people are not

watching the film because it's not in colour. Especially youngsters, they

don't want to watch a black-and-white film. I was worried that a film like

Naya Daur might be forgotten. So, I decided to colour the film as I didn't

want that to happen.

How long did it take to color the movie?

It took about two and half to three years because this is the first time

that we are doing it and I wanted a certain kind of colour for it. I didn't

want people to see that film and feel that this film was coloured later. I want

the film to look as if it was shot in colour.

Will the sound quality of the film also be improved?

Yes. It's 5.1 stereophonic sound.

What are the technical challenges faced while coloring a film, since it

takes lot of time?

One of the technical challenges is to see what the colour looks like.

Since the film is black and white, you don't know what the original colour

is. But there is a software which tells you approximately what the colour

could be. So we had to make those selections as to which would be the

right colour and that took a lot of time. .

Since the film is black and white, you don't know what the original

colour is. But there is a software which tells you approximately what the

colour could be.

When an old film is new packaged, what are the marketing challenges,

as people have already seen the film?

There is one set of audiences who have already seen the film and loved

it. The other set of audiences are the ones that we have to look at and those

are the audiences who we are targeting. These audiences must know the

beauty of the film. They must understand that this film is worth watching or

they would say why would I see a film which is 50 years old. We have to

make them understand that here's a classic which you should not


Did the coloured version of Mugal-E-Azam inspire you to colour Naya


I had started even before the colouring of Mughal-E-Azam actually.

And Mughal-E-Azam has in one way help me notice the mistakes that they

made, so that I could get over them before they could get the film on.

Mughal-E-Azam unfortunately, though a great film and a great classic

was not coloured the way I would've liked it to be. The film looked like it

was coloured, painted. I didn't want my film to look like that. I wanted

Naya Daur to look as if it was originally shot in colour. And when you see

the film, this is one thing that you'll surely notice.

How will Naya Daur be marketed to today's audiences?

The strongest element of that film was the music. In fact, the music of

this film is used in every marriage. Even today, during the sangeet

ceremony of the marriages, Naya Daur is played. So, we are going to use

all this and USP obviously will be colour of the film. The basic catch

phrase will be 'Was it shot in colour or black and white?'

What kind of release will the film get?

The film will be given a full fledged release like a regular film. We are

trying to release it by the first week of June.

I had started even before the colouring of Mughal-E-Azam


From the technical aspects lets now talk about the emotional connect

of the film. What were your first memories of the film Naya Daur?

Oh, I was a kid at that time. I remember going to shooting. I had gone

to this outdoor shooting to Pune. I remember the total family atmosphere

that was there. We had taken a big house out there and we used to live in

together. We used to play badminton and football in the evening after

pack-up. I also remember Dilip (Kumar) uncle making omelets for all of us.

Those are some of the fond memories that I have.

How was the response to the film when it released in 1957?

It was mind-blowing hit of that era. The film was released in Minerva

and Liberty in Mumbai and the film did so well that it completed silver

jubilee in both the theatres. I remember the first day, it was raining cats and

dogs and there was a spree of umbrellas outside the theatre as people were

crowding to watch the film.

Will attempts like re-releasing old classics give the new age audience a

feel of the golden era?

I hope so because there are some beautiful films made by my father (B

R Chopra), Bimal Roy, Guru Dutt and Raj Kapoor which are black and

white but classics. My concern is that we must not forget these films. It

would be sad if people ever stop watching these films because they were

black n white.

If this experiment works, I'll get all my father's films coloured. And I

could do the same to some of the other works also.

Any other films which are in the process of being colored?

The next film that we'll be working on is Gumraah. Then there will be

Kanoon, Dhool Ka Phool etc. My dad has made 7 black and white films

which I want to colour. I had talked to Guru Dutt's children and RK's

Dabbu and Chintu (Randhir and Rishi Kapoor) and I will definitely talk to

them again and tell them to do this to their father's films once this

experiment works.