Udit Narayan, Anil Sharma and Mithoon celebrate Udd jaa kaale kaawa

Udit Narayan, Anil Sharma and Mithoon at the Gadar 2 press conference. Photo: Universal Communications

Director Anil Sharma, singer Udit Narayan and composer Mithoon came together on July 5 to celebrate the love for the reprised version of Udd jaa kaale kaava from Zee Studios’ Gadar 2, set to release on August 11.

Three important aspects of the original film, Gadar: Ek Prem Katha (2001), that keep resonating still with the masses are the storyline, the patriotic action and the soul-stirring music. The music album of Gadar: Ek Prem Katha, composed by Uttam Singh and written by Anand Bakshi, has stood the test of time for 22 years.

Scoffing at the so-called changed taste of the youth, Anil Sharma stated that there were those who had even termed the original song as something the youth will not “like” way back in 2001! “But everyone connects with anything good, and today, the new version of Udd jaa kale kaawa is topping all the charts and downloads possible,” he said. The song started trending in no time and became a massive hit once again. It has received more than 55,000 comments and over 50 million views across various social media platforms.

At the event Udit Narayan, Mithoon and director Anil Sharma also gave a hint of another reprise, the chartbusting Main nikla gaddi lekar from the earlier film. The team poignantly remembered the late lyricist Anand Bakshi, and missed Alka Yagnik (co-singer of Udd jaa kaale kaawa), who could not make it. Uttam Singh, the original composer, was also hailed and the late actors from the film, Amrish Puri and Vivek Shauq, were fondly remembered. The director recalled how Amrish Puri was in tears during the narration of the original, in which he played Amisha Patel’s father, and effectively, the antagonist.

About the music, Anil Sharma stated that he once again realized how much the songs were treasured when he had gone up North to shoot Gadar 2. As for the film itself, it had shows in 2001 that even began at hours like 2 a.m. and 5 a.m., he said! He revealed that he told his new composer, Mithoon, that he would want only Udit Narayan to sing the two reprised songs for Sunny Deol, though the new original songs in the film would have other singers, like Arijit Singh for Utkarsh Sharma, Anil’s son, who was playing the lead with Sunny.

Talking about his conviction, Anil stated that he had always wanted to make a sequel. “But Gadar had become a brand, and I wanted a story that would connect as instantly and as deep as the first. My writer Shaktimaan and I were both thinking of plots, and finally, three years ago, he came up with an idea that was approved within 5 minutes by both Zee Studios (co-producers) and Sunny Deol!”

The passage of more than two decades has led to not just changes in Sunny’s and Amisha’s ages but also in that of Udit Narayan’s voice. Also, singing preferences (again, we feel, a silly assumption like Anil Sharma’s aforementioned “taste of the youth”) too have changed, claimed Mithoon.

The singer, however, found it challenging to sing in the way Mithoon had envisioned the song. “Over the years, I have been overwhelmed by the love of the industry and the audience, and I decided to take up this challenge too!” smiled Udit, who was again overcome when, after the recording, he was told that his voice flowed smoothly “just like a jharna (waterfall).”

Mithoon stated that he was averse to the term “re-creation” and preferred to say that he had rearranged the two older songs. He also thanked the filmmaker for giving him time to work on the original compositions. But the older songs were easy to re-do, as he already had a graph and the original lyrics that they did not want to change. “All I had to make sure was that I do not spoil the cult classics!” he said.

Udit smilingly expressed the hope that Mithoon, incidentally nephew to (Laxmikant-)Pyarelal (who had worked a lot with Udit), would also call him to render some original compositions and sentimentally revealed that the date of the press conference was the same as when his first film as a singer, Unnees Bees, was released 43 years ago. The song Mil gaya mil gaya, he added proudly, had been sung live along with his idol, Mohammed Rafi (and Usha Mangeshkar). In actual fact, the film was released a day earlier, on July 4.



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