The Ranbir-Katrina case: A goldmine for film producers


As Deepika bags Imtiaz Ali’s next with Ranbir, we wonder why no filmmaker seems keen to cash in on the real life couple’s chemistry.
From partying in Ibiza, to dining at posh restaurants and exchanging expensive gifts, Katrina Kaif is ruling Ranbir Kapoor’s heart at the moment. But curiously enough, when it comes to ruling the marquee, her rival and Ranbir’s ex Deepika Padukone seems to be enjoying an advantage. Reports suggest Deepika is set to rekindle her Yeh Jawaani… chemistry with RK and has clinched that coveted role opposite him in Imtiaz Ali’s next produced by Sajid Nadiadwala. Much to the disappointment of Kat, who had been pitching hard for the same.
A source close to Imtiaz’s film told us, “The final decision to cast Deepika was taken two days ago. Katrina is not doing the film.” So what really is tipping the scales in Dippy’s favour? Why is it that despite the success of Ajab Prem Ki Gazab Kahaani and an interesting turn in Rajneeti, this real life couple is not really firing up the filmmakers’ fancy?
There were reports that Katrina was the initial choice for Yeh Jawaani… as well but Dippy eventually impressed the makers enough to swing it. Producer of Ajab Prem…, Ramesh Taurani, in fact hinted that Deepika beat Katrina in both Yeh Jawaani… and Imtiaz’s next simply because ‘she suited the role better’. “We don’t cast actors simply because they are or were in a relationship,” he says, adding, “What is taken into account is, whether they are appropriate for the character.” However, trade analyst Vinod Mirani said rather candidly, “Deepika suits Ranbir much better. Next to RK, Katrina looks more mature. Secondly, Deepika’s growth as an actress cannot be discounted. Thirdly, Katrina’s biggest charm, her syrupy smile, is kind of wearing off.” There is also the other view that RK has reached that point in his career where no one really cares about who is his leading lady. Says Mirani: “With Yeh Jawaani…, RK has established himself as a surefire crowd puller. At least 60 per cent of the audience comes in simply because of him, the rest for the film itself. And casting a fresh face opposite someone like him cannot backfire.”
Perhaps which is why, Abhinav Kashyap did not hesitate to pair RK with newcomer Pallavi Sharda in Besharm or Vicky Singh a Jacqueline Fernandez in Roy. Girish Wankhede, GM, Marketing, PVR and Cinemax said, “I am in sync with the pulse of the audience. While you cannot take away the credit from Deepika or Katrina, you have to listen to the ‘oohs’and the ‘aahs’ for Ranbir in the lobby during the intervals. Cocktail was the turning point in Deepika’s career graph and the two ladies are now running neck to neck.” Ad-man, writer, lyricist Prasoon Joshi takes a more objective view of the developments, saying, “People tend to go for what is in. At the moment, it is Ranbir-Deepika.”