Karan Johar says his films are as real as Anurag Kashyap's

The filmmaker said he wrote the story for Ae Dil Hai Mushkil in just nine days when he was in New York.

Anusha Sharma, Karan Johar and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan in a conversation with Anupama Chopra and Rajeev Masand (both not in the frame) at the Mumbai film festival on Saturday. Picture: Shutterbugs Images


Karan Johar, who had a weight lifted off his shoulders this morning with the clearing of the decks for the release of his latest film Ae Dil Hai Mushkil on Diwali next weekend, said he finished writing the story in just nine days.

Present at the 18th Mumbai Film Festival, Johar told reporters: "I just took nine days to write the film. I was in New York and while walking around the streets, I was thinking about the pain a person goes through when one-sided love happens. I have gone through that pain. The story of Ae Dil Hai Mushkil talks about this side of a love story."

Asked if the story would have been told differently if a woman had directed it, Johar said: "I am trapped in my feminine side more strongly, so I don't think it would have made any difference if the film was directed by a female. I am mature enough to tell a story from both perspectives. In fact, I represent women more than men in my stories."

Talking about the film's successful music, Johar thanked music director Pritam and said: "The collaboration with Pritam and Amitabh Bhattacharya is magical. Their work is not only being credited as genius but also adds soul to my story. I thank them from the bottom of my heart."

Asked why his films are not as realistic as those of Anurag Kashyap, Johar responded: "Though my films talk about romance and the complexity of relationships, people can relate to all my characters and their emotions. Then why do you think they are not real?

Anurag and I are different in terms of projecting reality, but both of us are real. He deals with the darker side of reality and I talk about love, romance and beauty. You cannot compare these two as every director has his signature style.

"My film is no less real than Anurag's. You can say we [Karan Johar and Anurag Kashyap] are two different ragas in the world of music, we can co-exist."

The film had faced flak due to the involvement of Pakistani actor Fawad Khan and the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS), a local party in Maharashtra, had threatened to block its release. The release was cleared on Saturday after the MNS demanded that the producers pay Rs5 crore into an Indian Army welfare fund as atonement.