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    Dec 2008

    Default Bollywood stokes curiosity with unusual film titles

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    Whether it's Karan Johar's "Wake Up Sid" or Farhan Akhtar's "Kartik Calling Kartik", the trend of coining unique or unusual film titles has caught up with Bollywood filmmakers.

    From the use of numbers to a mix of English and Hindi words, producers and directors say they try to grab viewer attention right from the word go - which is the film title.

    Talking about "Kartik Calling Kartik", Farhan said: "Isn't that an intriguing title? It's supposed to generate curiosity. And to that extent it succeeds."

    Other such film names include Raj Kumar Santoshi's "Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani", Rajat Kapur's "Rectangular Love Story", Shyam Benegal's "Abba Ka Kuan", Deepti Naval's "Do Paise Ki Dhoop, Chaar Aane Ki Baarish", Sanjay Dutt starrer "Chatur Singh Two Star" and Vishal Bhardwaj's "Kaminay".

    "When one is looking for a title for the film, it goes without saying that one looks for an interesting, catchy title to grab the attention of the audience; that's the primary objective," said Atul Pandey, who is directing films like "Jalebi Culture" and "Laaton Ke Bhoot".

    "However, it is very important that the name corresponds with the film and the story. A title is only effective if it grabs the attention of the audience," he added.

    Among some names that have stood out in the last few years are "Taxi No.9211", "Manorama Six Feet Under", "Honeymoon Travels Private Ltd" and last but not the least "Dev D", which was a modern spin off on the classic title "Devdas". Most of these films hit the jackpot.

    Film critic Saibal Chatterjee told IANS: "We have been making films for so long that I think people have now run out of standard names.

    "At the same time every filmmaker wants a name that is catchy and attracts attention which is the prime objective of a film title. Such names create curiosity and in turn attract audience attention."

    Although out-of-the-box names for movies have been prevalent in yesteryear films such as "Aflatoon Aurat" (1940), "Aawaara Abdulla" (1963), "Badhti Ka Naam Dadhi" (1974) and "Albert Pinto Ko Gussa Kyon Aata Hai"(1980) besides others, the trend is more in vogue at present.

    With Hinglish titles such as "Carry On Pandu", "Love Khichdi", "Deewana Must Die", "Toonpur Ka Superhero" and the like, filmmakers try and target the youth, says film critic Omar Quereshi.

    "The title of a film helps in forming an opinion. The audiences are getting younger and more multiplex-oriented and their language is more Hinglish generic. Basically filmmakers make sure that these names are targeted at youth to catch their attention, since youngsters form the major chunk of the audiences," he said.



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