Sampooran Singh Kalra, better known by his pen nameÂ Gulzar, credits director Mani Ratnam’s humility for his latest lyrics. Gulzar had already penned a few songs for Ratnam’s latest film, ‘Raavan,’ for which the director sent the poetÂ a note of thanksfor his inspired work.
“In my entire career I’ve never received such a heartwarming endorsement of my work,” Gulzar said. “I received a note from Mani Ratnam congratulating me and saying he’s very proud of the music. And look at the humility of this genius. No filmmaker has ever sent me a note like this. Mani is the only one. And this one gesture has enhanced my respect for him even more.”
After 47 years as a lyricist, this first thank you letter even drove Gulzar to accept an invitation from Ratnam to attend a screening of the film. He flew to Chennai to do so, and upon seeing the closing credits, felt that AR Rahman’s song was too good to be released without lyrics, which is how the “extra” song came about.
Titled ‘Ab iss shareer ke sirey khol dey/Aur goongi aatma ko bol dey,’ Gulzar sent the lyrics to Rahman to include in the number. Rahman would no doubt have minded, being that Gulzar wrote the lyrics for ‘Jai Ho’ from the movie ‘Slumdog Millionaire,’ which won both men Grammy awards in 2010. This latest project together, ‘Raavan,’ is a modern retelling of the mythological tale that lies at the heart of the epic ‘Ramayana.’