Ashutosh Gowariker On Swades Reference In Jawan: “It Is Flattering”

 Filmmaker Ashutosh Gowariker says he is flattered with the clever usage of references to his acclaimed film Swades, starring Shah Rukh Khan, in recent blockbusters Brahmastra: Part One – Shiva and Jawan.

Gowariker, who currently stars in the Netflix series Kaala Paani, pointed out that Prime Video series Panchayat also gave a hat-tip to his 2004 drama film.

“It is very flattering (to see Swades references). The use is very clever. It was smartly done. When you are doffing your hat to a film that you have seen or has left an impression on you, the placement and position of that has to be done carefully.

“In both the cases, they have done a slightly tongue-in-cheek kind of thing. Even in Panchayat there’s a line, ‘Abbey ‘Swades’ ke Mohan Bhargav’, it is a very clever placement. The whole thing is justified the way it is placed,” the 59-year-old filmmaker told PTI.

In Jawan, Riddhi Dogra stars as Shah Rukh’s adoptive mother, Kaveri Amma. In Swades, late veteran actor Kishori Ballal played the character of Kaveri Amma, the mother figure to scientist Mohan Bhargav, played by Shah Rukh.

Ayan Mukerji, who served as an assistant director to Gowariker on Swades, paid homage to the movie in his 2022 film Brahmastra through Shah Rukh’s cameo of a scientist, named Mohan Bhargav.

Gowariker is best known for his work as a filmmaker of sprawling period dramas such as Lagaan, Jodhaa Akbar, Mohenjo Daro, and Panipat.

Asked if he believes moviegoers are more drawn to big-scale films today, Gowariker said the story is still more crucial than the production of a movie.

Citing the example of his 2016 film Mohenjo Daro, the filmmaker said the movie had a “great canvas” and lead actor Hrithik Roshan’s performance was superb and yet the film didn’t work.

“It sent me into an analysis (mode) about why it didn’t work. I realised that the story didn’t connect. My screenplay went wrong in creating the right emotional response that the audience should feel what the character is going through. So, no amount of great scale is going to help that,” he said.

“But still Mohenjo Daro is my favourite film, just putting it on record. I haven’t abandoned the film yet,” he pointed out.

Kaala Paani is directed by Sameer Saxena and Amit Golani, with screenplay by Biswapati Sarkar, Amit Golani, Sandeep Saket and Nimisha Misra.

The survival drama also stars Mona Singh, Amey Wagh, Sukant Goel, Vikas Kumar, and Arushi Sharma. 

 The director pointed out that Prime Video series Panchayat also gave a hat-tip to his 2004 drama film     

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