When real life couples fail in reel life

While promoting Singham Returns in Hyderabad recently, Ajay Devgn said, “A husband and wife shouldn’t work together.” He might have some logic there, for although Ajay and his wife Kajol have been cast together in several films, most of them haven’t worked at the box-office. And that includes their last project, Toonpur Ka Super Hero in 2010.

It is the same for couples like Aishwarya and Abhishek Bachchan and Saif Ali Khan and Kareena. They have managed to get endorsements together, but somehow their films don’t work.
Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt feels that the off-screen reality often weighs on the on-screen magic. “Cinema is a business of creating illusions. If the illusion gets shattered by the off-screen reality, then the magic doesn’t reach its acumen. Creating romance on-screen feels a little laboured because the audience knows they are already married or are in a relationship,” he says.
Director Kunal Kohli meanwhile says that if a script isn’t well-etched, even the best of actors can’t make it work. “The films that Saif and Kareena have done together haven’t been up to the mark. It all boils down to the content, which ultimately makes or breaks a film,” he says.
Director Anil Sharma adds that there is also a risk associated with casting real life couples in films. “These days films are made with high budgets and that’s why directors mostly don’t prefer taking the risk of casting off-screen couples because their chemistry, in context of the film might feel fake.”
Younger couples like Ranbir Kapoor and Katrina Kaif too have not been able to create that special spark on-screen yet, though their fans are eagerly waiting for it to happen in their upcoming film, Jagga Jasoos. Meanwhile the teasers and posters of Bang Bang are indications enough that Hrithik and Katrina, will have a crackling chemistry in the film.
Ranbir, in fact looked much better alongside Deepika Padukone in Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani than their earlier film together Bachna Ae Haseeno, even though they had started dating by then.
Trade analyst Taran Adarsh also feels that the only way for a film to succeed is for it to have a good story. “Amitabh and Jaya were married when they worked on Sholay and Rishi Kapoor and Neetu Singh have worked on brilliant films together, while being an off-screen couple. Viewers generally watch a film without any preconceived notion, they look at the storyline and the characters and whether they appeal to them.”
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