By Subhash K Jha
Sonam Kapoor who has turned 17 in Varanasi for her character in Raanjhanaa is trapped in a strange dilemma. Her character can't get older until a ghost voice is found for her.
The director Aanand Rai is looking for a singer who can express the 17-year old Sonam's emotions as she falls in love for the first time.
Says a source close to the director, `Aanand has got a beautiful song written by Irshad Kamil about girl expressing her first love. A R Rahman has come up with a flawless melody. Now the hunt is on for a ghost voice for Sonam to express the tremulous exuberance of a girl in love for the first time. `
The problem is, the director has put forward an incredibly daunting reference point.
Says our source, `Aanand wants a voice like Lataji in Raj Kapoor Saab's Bobby. In that film when Lataji sang Aksar koi ladki iss haal mein/kisi ladke se solve saal mein/Jo kehti hai wohmujhe kehna hai... she sounded like a 16-year girl experiencing the ecstacy of love. And mind you, Lataji was 40 when she sang for Bobby. Aanand wants the same feelings to emerge when Sonam sings of her first love. `
While the perfect voice is awaited, Aanand will wait.
Says our source from Varanasi, `The portions where Sonam and Dhanush play 17 are nearing completion. Now the two actors are expected to take a 5-year steep leap to play 23. But Aanand has put the transition on hold until he finds the voice for Sonam's 17-year old Sonam's love song. Until then she stands frozen in time. `
Adding to the voice crisis is the fact that composer Rahman never favours the director's suggestions on the choice of playback singers.
Aanand sounded blissfully unconcerned in Varanasi. `I am in no hurry. I am shooting here at my own pace, My actors Dhanush and Sonam are with me. And we're having fun. The voice that Rahman Saab and I are looking for may take time. That's okay.
We don't need to rush. There is no one to express what Lata Mangeshkar did in Bobby. But I can proudly tell you my song about first love has been as beautifully written and composed as Mujhe kuch kehna hai in Bobby. Raj Kapoor Saab would have been proud of us. `