Laaga Chunari Mein Daag - Journey Of A Woman [English: My Veil is Stained] is a 2007 Bollywood film directed by Pradeep Sarkar and starring Jaya Bachchan, Rani Mukerji, Konkona Sen Sharma, Kunal Kapoor and Anupam Kher with special appearances by Abhishek Bachchan and Hema Malini. Produced by Aditya Chopra it premiered on 12 October 2007. The film was the first directed by Sarkar under the Yash Raj Films banner.
Vaibhavari Sahay- affectionately called Badki [Rani Mukerji], and Shubhavari Sahay- affectionately called Chutki [Konkona Sen Sharma] are the daughters of Shivshankar Sahay [Anupam Kher] and Sabitri [Jaya Bachchan]. They live together on the banks of the Ganga [Ganges River] in Banaras. Life is full of happiness and joy for the two, though the family is relatively poor. Badki especially is protective of her family and is determined to ensure Chutki completes her education.
As things go from bad to worse, Badki goes to Mumbai to find work. After encountering many obstacles and feeling desperate and out of options, she is forced to become the exclusive call girl "Natasha". Misleading her family, by telling them she is an event planner and sending them money for her fathers medicines and to keep the family home from being foreclosed on, Badki hides her secret. Chutki completes her MBA and, unannounced, comes to live with Badki in Mumbai. The younger sister becomes a trainee at the agency Matrix Advertising, and Chutki falls in love with her boss, creative director Vivaan [Kunal Kapoor]. Badki finds love in attorney Rohan [Abhishek Bachchan], but leaves him, afraid that he would be disgusted by her profession. Chutki inadvertently discovers what Badki does for a living.
The two sisters return to Banaras for Chutkis wedding; Badki also comes face to face with Rohan, as he is revealed to be Vivaans brother. Old feelings resurface between the two and eventually Rohan asks Badki to marry him. Badki refuses, feeling that Rohan would never accept her after knowing her profession. Chutki convinces Badki to think about her happiness for once and accept his proposal. During the conversation Shivshankar, Sabitri and Chutki finally face the lies and secrets realising what Badki sacrificed for the family. Badki reveals her profession to Rohan who shocks her by announcing that he knew from the moment he saw her with her client in Zurich, that she was a call girl. Despite that he still wants to marry her in which Badki readily accepts finally gaining the happiness she has sought for.
Saif Ali Khan was originally approached for the role of Rohan that went to Abhishek Bachchan, and Vidya Balan had earlier been offered the role that went to Konkona Sen Sharma. Laaga Chunari Mein Daag was Jaya Bachchans first film since Nikhil Advanis Kal Ho Naa Ho in 2003.
The production of the film gathered some controversy when a lighting crew-member drowned in the Ganga River. During a shooting session in Varanasi, bodyguards of Rani Mukerji aggressively moved media people and fans away from the filmset. A political and media storm followed, as various groups insisted that Mukerji should have stopped the security guards. The actress then apologized to the media, though claiming the media were trying to get too close to both her and Konkona Sen Sharma. Some scenes involving Mukerji and Bachchan were shot in Bern, Switzerland and Spain.
The film premiered on 12 October 2007 in Mumbai and was released on the same day in North America. The film opened well as it was highly anticipated. However due to negative reviews as well as the competition it faced from the more successful Bhool Bhulaiya it became a box office dud in India. It was however significantly more successful overseas.
In India, the film critically received a generally negative response, with reviewers criticising the repetitious and obsolete story line. Raja Sen of Rediff.com said the movie "takes us back to a kind of cinema we thought we were done with. Indian cinema threw off the dupatta just a little while ago; lets not shackle it back down". Taran Adarsh from indiaFM said it "stands on a shaky script and has all chances of slipping". Martin DSouza of Glamsham.com noted, "this is a big letdown" from the director of the well-received Parineeta. The Hindustan Times wrote that, "This one comes out smelling of mothballs, like a wedding dress stored for decades in an attic trunk. Not surprising, since the plot is vintage 1977 from Aaina, and the 1995 Marathi film Doghi". Anupama Chopra found the film "a cauldron of wonderful cinematic talent, undone by half-baked writing".
Critical response in the United States to the film was more mixed. Frank Lovece of Film Journal International said that the film put "glossy Bollywood confection" in a historical context, calling it a "good old-fashioned, Douglas Sirk-style womens weepie ... so universal you could substitute Joan Crawford for Rani Mukerji and New York City for Mumbai".Maitland McDonagh of TV Guide found the film "breaks no new ground but is solidly entertaining". while David Chute of L.A. Weekly said, "The movie works so hard to transform its shocking subject into acceptable material for middlebrow melodrama that it never deals with it", and Rachel Saltz, of New York Times termed the film, "A fascinating blend of musical, melodrama and feminist fairy tale." .
thumb and Konkona Sen Sharma as sisters Vaibhavari and Shubhavari Sahay
* Jaya Bachchan as Shabitri Sahay - Shabitri is the one who holds the Sahay family together. As her husbands bitterness grows and affects his health, she leans on Badki for support. She is the only one in the family who knows what Badki has done to keep them all steady.
* Rani Mukerji as Vibhavari Sahay [Badki] - Badki [which means "big sister", Vibhais real name] aka Natasha - The eldest daughter, Badki is fiercely protective of her family. When her education is stopped to compensate for expenses she does not fret, but instead carries on and helps her mother. Her father has always disliked the fact that she was not born a son, which hurts her. She goes to Mumbai to help her family and does not hesitate in making sacrifices for them.
* Konkona Sen Sharma as Shubhavari Sahay [Chutki] - [which means "little sister", Shubhavariis real name- Chutkis life is full of everything she could ever want. Her mother and sister love her to the core and do everything to protect her. She is intelligent and sharp minded but unaware of the sacrifices Badki is making for the family.
* Anupam Kher as Shivshankar Sahay - A former economics teacher, Shivshanker is unable to cope with an unfair dismissal at the college and his bitterness grows and grows. As the family sinks into poverty, he does nothing to help. He buys lottery tickets thinking he will win and more importantly bring back his days of glory. He resents the fact that Badki was not born a son and vents out his frustrations on his loved ones. His disappointment in Badki continues when she goes to Mumbai, thinking she will achieve nothing.
* Kunal Kapoor as Vivaan Sharma - Having lived all his life in the big city, Vivaan has no idea how the rest of India lives or functions. When he meets Chutki, he dismisses her citing that she is a small village girl with no prospect of a job in his advertising agency. However he changes his mind when he comes face to face with her independent attitude and is blown away.
* Abhishek Bachchan as Rohan Varma [Extended special appearance] - Rohan is a top attorney. His look may be that of someone who is serious but inside he has a child like innocence. He meets Badki and falls in love with her but she runs away from him. Rohan is set on finding out why Badki is the way she is but he is not prepared for what he hears.
* Kamini Kaushal as
* Hema Malini as Special appearance as a dancer [kothi]
* Tarana Raja as Sophia
* Ninad Kamat as Karan
* Harsh Chhaya as K. Gupta
* Murli Sharma
* Tinnu Anand
* Sushant Singh
* Suchitra Pillai as Michele
* Filmfare Best Actress Award [nomination]- Rani Mukerji
* Filmfare Best Supporting Actress Award [nomination]- Konkona Sen Sharma
The awards it won are highlighted in bold.
* Stardust Star of the Year Award - Female - Rani Mukerji
Source : Laaga Chunari Mein Daag Wiki Page