Shah Rukh Khan on the right way to achieve success, his favourite characters from his own films, handling calls from gangsters and the SRK biopic
Happy New Year is being touted as a celebration of Hindi cinema, but for you it’s also a renewal of your friendship with Farah Khan, isn’t it?
I would have worked with Farah whenever she would have asked, but this is the way it was supposed to happen. A few years ago, Farah had a story about five young boys in a basti. I felt I was a bit old. Then she changed the story. I haven’t worked for a film about dance other than ‘Dil Toh Pagal Hai’, but it was interesting to add the heist angle. It’s like Ocean’s Eleven meets The Full Monty. As a producer, making difficult films is my thing, so I did it.
When choosing a film, what is easier for you — saying yes or no?
I take a long time to say no. I feel bad whenever I have to refuse a film. I avoid the conversation, make excuses not to meet or call the person, and then read the script a few more times. Saying yes is pretty much instinctive, but I explain to the filmmaker that I can start the film a year late. For me, choosing a film is to choose a state of mind that I want to be in. I do films that make me happy. I don’t understand when actors say they did a film because it was “challenging” or “exciting”. Those are heavy words. I like to be simple — I want to be happy.
Do you feel the pressure to do a particular kind of film that the audience likes to watch you in?
I’ve doled out a lot of different stuff and the audience has always loved me. ‘Swades’ may not be so huge commercially, but it was loved. Ditto with Chak De! India, even Ra.One. As a superhero film, it didn’t have that big a market, but my audience loved it. In my 25 years in the industry, I’ve always brought a certain integrity to my work and the audience love that. I do a film because I need to do it. I’m the happiest while working. We have been travelling like crazy for ‘Happy New Year'; some days, I don’t even know which city I’m in or where I am going next. I’ve decided this is the best way to be. I don’t need to know much. I just want to be on the set and act. That’s my job. Main sirf acting continued…
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