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Monday, January 7, 2008

"When Aamir asks… you don't question him" - Ram Madhavani

Ad filmmaker Ram Madhavani gladly shot the song ‘Bheja Kam’ in Aamir Khan's Taare Zameen Par. "Why did I agree to shoot just one song for Aamir? Because he asked me to! As simple as that. When an artiste of Aamir Khan's integrity asks you to do be part of something that's special to him, you don't question him. You just enjoy the process of being part of the creativity."

In the song Ram aspired to capture the chaos and confusion of the child's mind as he's jostled and pushed into a routine. "Aamir gave me full freedom to shoot how I wanted. There was no interference whatsoever. While Aamir shot the scenes with the kids in the school in Panchagani in one class room I shot my song in the adjacent classroom. I was stuck by his sincerity."

Going back to Panchagani to shoot the ‘Bheja Kam’ song was an exercise in nostalgia for Ram. "I went to boarding school in Panchgani. And that isn't my only connection to Taare Zameen Par. My name is Ram, that's Aamir's name in the film. And the boy's surname is Awasthi which was my wife's maiden name."

Working in Taare Zameen Par has been a life-changing experience for Ram. "When Aamir called me to see the rushes before shooting the song I didn't know what I was getting into. Taare has changed my attitude towards my own ten-year old son Siddhant. Now, I no longer pressurize him into performing or excelling."

Ram admits he never saw the ‘Bheja Kam’ song as a stepping -stone to other assignments from Aamir Khan. "For me it's enough that I was part of a film that really makes a difference to the quality of our lives."

It's been six years since Ram made his first and only feature film Let's Talk where Boman Irani made his startling debut. "I'm very proud of what Boman has done since then. Some of his work has been truly exemplary. As for me, yes it's been a while. I intend to do another feature film soon. I know many people think ads are a sell-out. But I firmly believe everything including the painting of the Sistine Chapel was commissioned," Ram says with his tongue firmly in cheek.

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