How to #staymarried

Ambika Shaligram
Wednesday, 6 March 2019

Marathi film Ti & Ti addresses issues of compatibility and confusion that a marriage inevitably brings in its wake. The cast and director tell us more about it 

Ti & Ti, Mrunal Kulkarni’s third directorial, addresses the Big Cs in relationship — commitment, compatibility and confusion. These are some of the issues that the young couples are dealing with it. And, the reason is too many choices to make, says Mrunal. Mrunal and her actors, Pushkar Jog, Sonalee Kulkarni and Prarthana Behre, visited Sakal Times office to talk about the film that releases on Friday, March 8. 

“My first film as a director was Prem Mhanje Prem Asta, my second was Rama Madhav, a historical, period drama. I wanted to do a different film as my third directorial. It so happened that Pushkar had come over to my place and said, ‘Why don’t we work together?’ My son, Virajas, who had graduated from film school in screenplay and direction, happened to be there. Pushkar wanted to do something in urban rom-com genre. I asked Virajas if he would write the story. He balked because ‘romance isn’t his thing’. He has written in thriller and horror genre for his theatre projects. At my prodding, he gave it a try,” says Mrunal.

She adds that the two had differences over the script, but they worked around it. “Virajas’s original script contained only three characters. I told him, ‘This is not how it works. We need to have more people. Marriage invites more reactions, responses.’ So the characters played by senior artists in the film is my contribution,” informs Mrunal.

In the film, Pushkar plays Anay Pandit, a boy/man in love with the idea of romance. “His idea of romance is what SRK does in films, grand declaration of love. But in real life, to reach that ideal state of romance, the husband and wife have to work hard at the relationship,” Mrunal adds. 

Pushkar continues, “My character is confused, unsure about his feelings. He has a crush on his classmate. And, when they meet after school, he is thrilled. But here’s the catch. Anay is married and is in London on a honeymoon with his wife when the two meet. The story is about me, sandwiched between two ti-s — two women.”

The film makes a few observations on the society’s approach towards man-woman relationship, but in a humourous way. Mrunal says, “Too many options confuse  the boys, but girls, I feel, are more sorted and confident, independent. The two ‘tis’ in the movie are just like today’s girls, sure of what they want and sorted.”

Sonalee, who plays one of the girls in Pushkar’s life, says, “My character, Priyanka, is flamboyant and free spirited. What we have tried to do through the movie is to make people think, without making it preachy. We talk about commitment, compromise, issues which have assumed big proportion in relationships today. The ’90s kids were big on cinema and that influenced the choices they made. But we also need to think if all this can be replicated in real life. Women have become independent, so they wonder if they should be compromising. But in a marriage, if one partner is not able to take charge of the situation, than the other person has to step forward. Compromise is necessary.”

Prarthana, who got married around the time the movie was made, could relate to the subject. “But, I am nowhere like Saee. She is very sorted and clear-headed, which I am not. I am trying to be like her. I also wanted to work with a female director because they understand their female characters really well. Mrunal ma’am helped me in understanding Saee,” she adds.

Pushkar, who is also one of the producers of the movie, has plans to release Ti & Ti in European market. Says he, “Normally, what happens is that Marathi films are released abroad at the behest of Maharashtra Mandal. It gets a show or two and so it doesn’t help producers. Also, the film is screened there six months after it has been released here. We have tied up with Carnival Cinemas, which has purchased Novo cinemas in Dubai and they have tapped the markets in Europe, Singapore and USA. So Ti & Ti will release there either on March 15 or March 20. We hope to have a proper release.”

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