Eighty years ago legendary British actor Lupino Lane created a (yet unbroken) record for a male actor playing 24 roles in Only Me (1929). And now Bollywood star Priyanka Chopra is all excited about the possibility of her entering the record books for doing 12 roles in forthcoming What's Your Raashee.
"I was aware about Sanjeev Kumar playing nine roles in Naya Din Nayi Raat and Kamal Haasan being seen 10 times over in Dashavatharam. I got to know about Lupino Lane's achievement very recently. Hats off to him to have done that eight decades back and that too in a silent film," said Priyanka.
In Ashutosh Gowariker's What's Your Raashee, Priyanka plays 12 different roles and the film has already been referred to the Guinness Book of World Records.
While there have been quite a few double role performances by leading ladies in the past, there aren't many movies where a Bollywood actress has played even a triple role, let alone enacting a dozen-odd characters in a single outing.
"Yes, I have been told about this. I guess not just in India but even in world cinema no woman has ever played 12 different characters in the film. In fact, the producers of What's Your Raashee have got in touch with the Guinness Book of World Records and we are awaiting their response," said Priyanka.
If one goes down memory lane, one can comfortably say that with What's Your Raashee, Priyanka may well boast of doing the biggest ever film written for a woman protagonist in the history of Indian cinema.
"Please don't make it all sound so big and heavy. Let's just look at it as an entertaining movie and leave it there. Words like 'greatest' and 'biggest' don't hold much relevance if one doesn't justify each of the characters. You may win when it comes to count but then you must also be able to put some weight in your performance," she said.
So was she overjoyed when Gowariker approached her for the role?
"Not at all. In fact I was quite nervous about how I would manage to pull it off. A role may look fantastic on paper and you too may feel confident of pulling it off. Still, you have to be extra careful to make sure that audiences too like what you bring to the table," said Priyanka, who has given three consecutive hits - Dostana, Fashion and Kaminey.
This was the reason why she stayed away from all the limelight while shooting for What's Your Raashee and her look for each of the characters too was kept under wraps.
"You end up picking on all the flattery around you but none of that helps in what comes across on screen", she said. "What's Your Raashee' has such a fantastic script written with each of the 12 roles boasting of such well-etched characterisation.
"I had to go all out in following Ashutosh's vision. With the coming together of a great production house, an intelligent director, a fantastic co-star and some melodious music, it all seems to have summed up well. Now that the mathematics part has gone well, it is time to see how audiences react to our effort."
What's Your Raashee is set to release September 25.