Jemima Khan on how her real life inspired What's Love Got To Do With It?

Jemima Khan admits that most of What's Love Got To Do With It? was 'pilfered' from her real life. What's Love Got To Do With It? is in cinemas fro 24 February.

Video transcript

JASMINE VALENTINE: Your writing is so sharp and so funny, and there's just something for everybody to appreciate and relate to.

JEMIMA KHAN: Thank you.

JASMINE VALENTINE: How do you approach bringing out the best of two very different cultures?

JEMIMA KHAN: Just on the writing front, I learned to write thanks to a very kind friend of mine, who basically taught me, who's a screenwriter, Ol Parker, who wrote-- he did "Ticket to Paradise" and "Mamma Mia" and a load of great films. And he read every single draft and was just an amazing, kind of, mentor. And then balancing writing about two different cultures, well, I mean, it's just my, kind of, personal experience.

Every single anecdote, every single person that you meet in the film is someone that I have in some way or another met in real life or experienced or seen in real life. Even some of the lines are taken from moments in real life, like when the mother says, my parents asked me to choose between two people, and I said, no, you choose so I can blame you. I remember that being said to me exactly as it was written. So yeah, a lot of it was just pilfered from real life.

JASMINE VALENTINE: This sort of documentary film within a film, I think that's really interesting. Was that always supposed to be the case? How did you approach that?

SHEKHAR KAPUR: That was a stroke of genius from Jemima. I have to say it was her idea, and that was absolute genius. That and the fairy tales and when I read the script and I said, oh, OK, OK, OK. There's some things in this film that's so different that will throw the audience into getting to a different mindset because audience is going to the film and say, oh, it's a romcom to make me laugh.

No, this will take you down the path and then shift and go this way, and it'll shift and go that way. So really, that's how life is. It keeps shifting, and that's what the film does. And those two things you mentioned, they're absolute strokes of genius from Jemima.

NITIN SAWHNEY: In Jemima's writing, she has a real-- it is a very candid kind of-- her style of writing is very open, and I think that's because of the way she is as a person. And it's a very-- there's a real honesty and authenticity to the characterization. And I think that's because of her own experiences. She understands the worlds of the characters.

And I think in that way, she's pretty much the only person I could think of who'd be capable of writing something like this with any real genuine credibility, and that's amazing. And not that I knew of her as a script writer before, but what a great script and what an amazing director to have directed it as well.