Bollywood superstar Rani Mukerji, who was recently in attendance at the 54th International Film Festival of India in Goa, spoke in great detail about the aftermath of the release of the film Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna. During a masterclass, Mukerji revealed that the film’s portrayal of uncomfortable truths about Indian marriages sparked a notable increase in divorce rates, as reported by Hindustan Times and Indian Express.
The star shared insights into the impact of the film, stating, “I think what happened with Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna was that, after the film (was released), there were a lot of divorces. There were a lot of people going to the theatre and watching the film in extreme discomfort. And I think that is the feedback Karan (Johar) got for his film, and I think it opened eyes for a lot of people and they took the decision of being happy.”
Discussing her character Maya in the film, Mukerji emphasised the significance of exploring a woman’s desires and choices in relationships. She commended filmmaker Karan Johar for addressing unconventional themes, stating, “What is beautiful about Maya’s character is that she loved Rishi (Abhishek Bachchan) in a different capacity and as a friend. What she found in Shah Rukh Khan’s character was the romance she was always looking for.”
She continued, “It is very important to talk about a woman’s wants and her choices. Just because the husband doesn’t beat you, it does not mean that he is good in bed or you are in love with him. A woman is never allowed or asked, ‘Are you attracted to this man?’” She highlighted further, “In fact, Karan Johar was bold enough to make a film like that at a time when he wasn’t sure what was happening. I think it is important to stand by strong films and strong roles. But in the history of Indian cinema, it will always be remembered as a film which is always ahead of its time.”
Karan, the director of Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna, had previously disclosed disagreements with producer Aditya Chopra regarding a controversial scene in which characters played by Khan and Mukerji commit adultery. Despite the reservations, Johar insisted on including the scene, recognising its potential impact on the narrative and societal dialogue. Subsequently, he came to the realization that, from a commercial perspective, it might have been wiser to omit the controversial scene.
Released in 2006, Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna featured Khan, Bachchan, and Preity Zinta in pivotal roles. The film explored complex themes of love, infidelity, and societal expectations, challenging traditional narratives in Indian cinema.
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