Actor Karann Nathh / Karan Nath, who made his debut as a child artiste in Shekhar Kapur’s ‘Mr. India’ (1987) and later appeared in films like ‘Yeh Dil Aashiqana’ (2002) and ‘L.O.C Kargil’ (2003), is all set to make a comeback to the movies with ‘Guns Of Banaras’, an official remake of Dhanush’s Tamil hit 2007 ‘Polladhavan’. Karann’s family has been in the movie business for generations. While his father Rakesh Nath has been a celebrity manager and has produced films (‘Dil Tera Aashiq’, ‘Mohabbat’ and ‘Gaja Gamini’), his mother Reema Rakesh Nath has also been a writer (‘Sailaab’, ‘Saajan’, ‘Dil Tera Aashiq’, ‘Mohabbat’, ‘Yaarana’, ‘Mohabbat’, ‘Aarzoo’, ‘Hum Tumhare Hain Sanam’) and director (‘Mohabbat’). His family’s journey into cinema can be traced back to the time when his paternal grandfather D.K Sapru made his debut into Hindi cinema as an actor in the late 40s. In fact, there is an interesting ‘Romeo & Juliet’ link between Sapru and Karann as far as their film careers are concerned.
D. K Sapru or Sapru, as he was commonly known as, made his acting debut with the film ‘Romeo & Juliet’ which, as the title suggests, was based on one of the most legendary plays of the same name by the English playwright Shakespeare. In the film, his leading lady or ‘Juliet’ was Nargis. The film had a bunch of memorable songs like ‘Kisko Khabar Thi Dil Ki’, ‘Tumhein Sitaaron Ne’ which were composed by Nargis’s mother Jaddanbai. This was probably one of the earliest film adaptions of the play in the Hindi film industry. Since then, several Indian filmmakers, across different industries, have adapted this play and tweaked and played around with the original story according to their own sensibilities.
Karann made his debust as an adult actor in the Joy Augustine directed ‘Paagalpan’ in 2001. Though not titled ‘Romeo & Juliet’ like the Sapru-Nargis starrer, this film was very much inspired from the classic Shakespaerean tale. Even if you have not seen the film, just a brief glance at the synopsis of the film on any of the online sites will make you realise that the film derived its source material from ‘Romeo & Juliet’. It was set in the present times and Augustine, who also wrote the script, brought several elements which were not a part of the play but it was largely a tribute to Shakespeare. Karann’s Sameer was a modern-day Romeo and Aarti Agarwal’s Roma had traits that were similar to Juliet. The film was a romantic tale of these two people who come from two completely different backgrounds and how it leads to discord and eventually, bloodshed between the two families. The film had a couple of melodious songs like ‘Kahin Na Kahin Hai’ and ‘Mera Dil’ composed by Raju Singh which were very popular at the time of the film’s release.
I watched ‘Romeo & Juliet’ a couple of years ago on an online platform. At the time of writing this article, it could not be found anywhere online. ‘Paagalpan’ can be watched on Eros Now and Jio Cinema. Karann Nathh’s new film ‘Guns Of Banaras’ hits the screens on 28 February, 2020.