Will the John-Priyanka combo click in ‘Karam’?

Subhash K Jha


Will ‘Karam’ be garam at the box office? Going by the anticipation, it appears music-video director Sanjay F. Gupta has a potential winner on his hands with his John Abraham-Priyanka Chopra starrer. A myth that needs to be demolished is that former models cannot be successful movie stars, especially when they come in combinations. Priyanka Chopra failed to make magic with Arjun Rampal in Rajiv Rai’s ‘Asambhav’ last year, while John fumbled with Lara Dutta in his last release ‘Elaan’. Could it be a case of too much of the ramp factor? We shall soon know. John’s last film ‘Elaan’ and Priyanka’s ‘Blackmail’ were disasters. urprisingly, audiences seem to have forgiven them for their recent trespasses. Everyone is looking at the John-Priyanka pair as the stars of ‘Dhoom’ and ‘Aitraaz’, respectively.

These two 2004 films have catapulted Abraham and Chopra into the top league. Distributors are hoping to see a successful pair emerge from this unlikely twosome (John is attached to Priyanka’s real-life rival Bipasha Basu, while Priyanka is officially single). Priyanka has already proved herself a successful pair with Akshay Kumar. They’ve done three hit films — ‘Andaz’, ‘Mujhse Shaadi Karogi’ and ‘Aitraaz’. But now after rumours of a link-up between them, Priyanka needs to look for another steady and saleable co-star beyond Akshay Kumar. The problem is she hasn’t clicked with anyone else so far. Her teaming up with Sunny Deol in her first film ‘The Hero’ was pretty disastrous. With Bobby Deol, who pairs with her again in the forthcoming ‘Barsaat’, Priyanka was a no-no in ‘Kismat’. Arjun Rampal and Suneel Shetty also proved non-profitable partners for Priyanka in “Asambhav” and ‘Blackmail’, respectively.

Will John prove to be a viable replacement for Akshay Kumar in Priyanka’s career? ‘Karam’ does have the trappings of a slick eyeball-grabbing thriller. Director Sanjay F. Gupta (not to be confused with Sanjay Gupta) has been a cinematographer and a music-video maker of considerable repute. His crossover is being monitored with keen interest by the film industry.