Casts: Arjun Kapoor, Deepika Padukone, Pankaj Kapur, Dimple Kapadia , Naseeruddin Shah
Banner: Maddock Films
Director: Homi Adajania
Producer: Dinesh Vijan
Writers: Homi Adajania and Kersi Khambatta
Music: Mathias Duplessy and Sachin-Jigar
Release Date: 12th September 2014
Story line: Finding Fanny revolves around five rather dysfunctional characters that live in the quaint sleepy village of Pocolim, nestled deep in the interiors of Goa, India. Pocolim is a village where pointless conversations are a way of life. Nothing ever really happens here and the people of Pocolim, well, they just exist. One night, the old postman Ferdie (Naseeruddin Shah), receives a letter that is slipped under his door.
He realizes that it is the letter he had written 46 years ago to the love of his life, Stefanie Fernandes (Anjali Patil), asking for her hand in marriage. To his utter shock, he discovers that it had never been delivered. All these years Ferdie has lived a life of melancholy and regret, believing that Stefanie had rejected him. He decides to find his beloved Fanny (as he fondly called her) and tell her the truth. Where would she be after 46 years? Dead? Happily married? Would she even remember him? Or is Stefanie Fernandes merely a figment of Ferdie’s imagination?
Four colorful characters from the village join the trip under random pretexts, though in actuality everyone wants a distraction from their mundane lives. A young virgin widow (Deepika Padukone), a bitter mechanic (Arjun Kapoor), a belligerent artist (Pankaj Kapur) and an obnoxious self-appointed “Lady” of Pocolim (Dimple Kapadia) join Ferdie as they experience various hilarious and moving events that change their lives forever.
Know more about the captain of the Ship, the director:
Homi Adajania entered the film industry directing and co-writing the English-language psychological drama Being Cyrus (2006) starring noted Bollywood actors like Saif Ali Khan, Naseeruddin Shah, Dimple Kapadia, and Boman Irani. The film earned critical acclaim, despite being commercially unsuccessful. Film critic Rajeev Masand called it “a stylish thriller that’s told in an immensely engaging style.”
Adajania’s second directorial venture was the Hindi-language romantic comedy Cocktail (2012). The film was written by filmmaker Imtiaz Ali and produced by Saif Ali Khan and Dinesh Vijan under their banner Illuminati Films. The lead roles were played by Saif Ali Khan, Deepika Padukone, and debutante actress Diana Penty, while Dimple Kapadia and Boman Irani featured in supporting roles. After its three-week run, Box Office India declared the film a hit in India and abroad. It earned mixed to positive reviews from critics.
Facts And Figures:
It has also been selected to be screened at Busan International Film Festival in October, 2014. The flim has been cleared with a U/A certificate.
Homi Adajania wrote the first draft of the screenplay during his month long stay at village Salvador do Mundo in Goa. During this period he also studied local Goan Catholics, and added some dysfunctional characters into what he called, “hybrid Marquezian Indian village”, which became the fictional village of Pocolim. To get local nuances and cultural research right, he took the help of Goan writer, Cecil Pinto. Adajania didn’t intend to write the film as a road film, instead he placed it in the genre of As Good as It Gets. This was his second collaboration with Kersi Khambatta, who also wrote the dialogues for his debut film, Being Cyrus. Khambatta wrote the scenes, chapter by chapter, like a novel, which aided in the development of the script.The screenplay of Finding Fanny was adapted from a novel by Kersi Khambatta. The 200-page novel is expected to his shelves later in 2015.
He had finished writing the script of Finding Fanny by 2009, 4 years after his first directorial venture Being Cyrus released. However, casting for the film became an issue as it was an offbeat film—Imran Khan and Sonam Kapoor were initially offered roles in the films, though they turned their respective parts down. Dinesh Vijan had suggested against making the film, advising Adajania that “you are going to make a Hinglish film which only 10 people will see.” Hence, Adajania postponed the film and went on to direct Cocktail instead. During the shooting of Cocktail, his narration of the story to lead actress Deepika Padukone had impressed her, and she expressed her desire to be a part of the film.
In May 2013, Padukone and Arjun Kapoor were signed on for leading roles, the latter being assigned the part of “a mechanic, who’s in denial about being a loser. “Reportedly, Padukone has reduced her usual fee for the film and has also signed a profit-sharing deal with the producers.By August 2013, Naseeruddin Shah and Dimple Kapadia, who earlier featured in Being Cyrus, were signed on for the film; Pankaj Kapur joined the cast the following month. Whilst the film was earlier reported to be a short film, Padukone confirmed in an interview that this was untrue. The film will be showcased in English and Hindi versions to cater for the audience in India and abroad.
Before the filming could commence, sessions and workshops were organized with the actors. Later, a month prior to it, Adajania and Naseeruddin Shah figured out where to place the latter’s character emotionally and his body language, through story arc from vulnerable, even “borderline idiotic” to coming into his strength later in the film. Shah decided to use a mid-range voice, instead of his natural baritone. Arjun Kapoor was convinced to use a restraint acting style, compared his usual dramatic style, and appeared “effortlessness of just being
My Gut Feel and comments:
Although our Bollywood audience is getting mature with every passing year however a HINGLISH film is still a risk as it restrict the reachability of film to classes and not the masses which seems to be the case with Finding Fanny. Star cast is impressive, story line appeals to be interesting however holding attention of audience throughout the film is a challenge especially in second half of movies like this. Director Homi Adajania’s previous work Being cyrus was experimental in nature and same seems to be the case with Finding Fanny.
I would give Finding Fanny 3 stars out of 5 stars, five days before the release and expecting it to be one time watch.