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Meet the New Chamko

The remake of Chashme Buddoor and its twist on the female lead tell of the times we live in.

Written by PriyankaPereira |
March 13, 2013 2:48:51 am

The remake of Chashme Buddoor and its twist on the female lead tell of the times we live in.

A year ago,while shooting for her recently-released film Listen… Amaya in Delhi,actor Deepti Naval was pleasantly surprised at the way some people would greet her. She says,“On many occasions,people would say: ‘Miss Chamko,tutti-frutti ice cream khaana hai?’.” Miss Chamko is a moniker that goes back to 1981 — her character in Sai Paranjpye’s classic Chashme Buddoor that sells Chamko detergent powder.

Cut to 2013: the movie has been remade by David Dhawan although the story remains the same — three friends vie for one girl’s attention. And while debutante actress Taapsee Pannu plays Naval’s character,she is no longer referred to as Miss Chamko. “I am called ‘haseena phataka’ in the film. And the boys refer to me as their shikaar,” she says,with a grin.

Explaining this change,Pannu says,“The movie is a David-ised version of Chashme Buddoor,” referring to the director’s brand of comedy. Her character,in accordance,is more boisterous than the lively character Naval played. “It is how a girl of today would react. In this era,one will not come across a girl who will take everything lying down and sit and cry in a corner. She will fight her way if she feels betrayed,” says Pannu.

A lot has changed in Bollywood over the years . The urban Indian middle-class is no longer as submissive as it used to be. Women too have found their voice and the docile heroine has long become a thing of the past. The remade Chashme Baddoor keeps with these changed times. “Society has changed and showing the sensibilities of the 1980s today would be a mismatch,” says Pannu.

Naval,however,believes “the innocence and simplicity of the original is what made it so popular. The audience had characters they could relate to.” When Sai Paranjype wanted Naval in the lead,she wanted an actor who did not look larger than life,rather someone who the youth of the country would relate to. “When the film released,Sai’s hunch proved right,” says Naval,who became a role model for young girls then.

Dhawan though does not have any such intention. “When he approached me for the role,I went through several screen tests. He wanted to be sure that I would fit the role of the no-nonsense girl who would be on par with the boys in the film,” says Pannu. Naval is keen to watch the remake. “I want to see how each of the characters has been contemporised and have evolved over 30 years,” she says.

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