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“Katrina is awesome”: Ajay-Atul

Less than a month into 2012, it’s a case of “If it ain’t broke…” for Katrina Kaif. The alabaster-skinned bombshell, who sizzled with her ‘item numbers’ in ‘Tees Mar Khan’ and ‘Bodyguard’ in 2010 and 2011 respectively, is back to rock the imaginations of men and boys (not to mention members of the female species) with the appropriately named ‘Chikni Chameli’. The song will feature in Karan Johar’s eagerly anticipated ‘Agneepath’ and has already created considerable buzz on Youtube with a staggering 3 million views in a mere 5 days and become No. 1 in several streaming services in India.

Quite apart from Katrina’s mesmeric hip gyration, the tune itself has captured people’s imaginations and that’s in large part due to …Chameli’s composers Ajay-Atul who adapted the song from the Marathi hit ‘Kombdi Padali’.

The duo spoke to The UKAsian about the song’s evolution and of course…Katrina Kaif.

‘Chikni Chameli’ is adapted from a song you previously created for the Marathi film ‘Jatra’. How did that process work?

The thought totally came from our producer Karan Johar and ‘Agneepath’ director Karan Malhotra. We were composing another song for Agneepath, but the pace and tempo of this song is so high and the point at which this song comes in the movie is after the interval and the story needs that fast pace. This song perfectly matches with the screenplay and storyboard at that point. So they came up with the idea that we’ll use one of your already super duper hit songs. We were very happy that our original song was going on an international platform. It’s a next step for our Marathi film industry.

How did you feel when you saw your music come live on screen?

Even now we are doing the background score for the film and it is looking awesome on screen. I am overwhelmed because people have responded so well to all the song. ‘Chikni Chameli’ is huge and popular.

Please tell us about the music album, was there scope for music in this sort of action-packed film?

Normally in action films, you don’t get many situations where you can add songs. If you see action films, where’s the scope for music? Even the original ‘Agneepath’ had three or four songs, our album has six songs, and we have tried to maintain a good variety with one intense Ganpati song, one qawwali, one romantic number, another song capturing the emotions of a brother and sister… we wanted to give this album our best because it is very special for us.

What were your thoughts when you first witnessed Katrina perform the song?

We were like ohhhfff…(Laughs). The energy she brings is tremendous. She rehearsed for 8 days and the shooting went on for 9 days and she was dancing continuously. If you listen to that song, any artist and even if I was dancing to it, would get tired in just two minutes, but it’s a 5-6 minute song. She has taken it to another level. She’s awesome. She’s fabulous.

‘Chikni Chameli’ is available now on iTunes worldwide. ‘Agneepath’ releases in cinemas worldwide on 26th January 2012.

* Poonam Joshi

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