FACE TO FACE The launch of his home banner, his debut on television, his forthcoming film Chatur Singh Two Star … Sanjay Dutt has enough reasons to feel upbeat, says harshikaa udasi

There may be reports of trouble brewing between ‘best friends' Sanjay Dutt and Salman Khan just before they begin the shoot of a fresh season of TV reality show Bigg Boss, but the actor known as ‘Sanju baba' to close friends shows no signs of being perturbed. Ask him if the excitement is building up with Bigg Boss and his first home production, Rascals, with Ajay Devgn, and he says, “Yes, I am very excited. Not only is it the debut of my home banner, Rascals directed by David Dhawan, but also my debut on television.”

The excitement is also thanks to a film titled Chatur Singh Two Star which is seeing the light of day after almost two years. Starring Sanjay Dutt and Ameesha Patel in pivotal roles, the film, which seems heavily inspired by the Pink Panther series, is reportedly based on a novel called “Chaalaak Jasoos” and has been directed by Ajay Chandok. Sanjay Dutt plays the bumbling police officer Chatur Singh who seems to be at the centre of every mess. Through some strange luck, he gets assigned a high profile case which he manages to solve with help from Sonia (Ameesha Patel) despite bungling at every stage. “It is a comic character. I play a cop who thinks he is a smart crime-buster. It's a silly character,” says Sanjay, adding the film's delay hasn't dampened his spirits. “I feel the promos look very fresh, though the film has been in the making for a long time. But it doesn't matter; every film has its ups and downs. I'm glad it's releasing. It was a challenging role for me.”

Sanjay and Ameesha, who is rarely seen in films lately, had a good working relationship given that she is a close family aide and a good friend of his wife Maanyata. The actor says working with someone whom you know personally makes it a comfortable experience. “Ameesha is a good co-star to work with. She is very professional. I had great fun working with her.”

360-degree turn

Comedy has become the actor's forte. For an actor with his physique and rugged looks, who set out to be an action hero, it is a 360-degree turn. “No, I never plan anything as such. What I was comfortable with and liked to do, I did. If I like the script and am comfortable with the character, I go along with it, whether it is action or comedy.”

Sanjay Dutt's home banner, simply called Sanjay Dutt Productions, is releasing its first movie Rascals, directed by David Dhawan, this year. He has also Soham Shah's Khote Sikkey and Anthony D'Souza's Bond lined up according to reports, but he would rather be tight-lipped about them. “I have no strategies for my banner. When I thought of producing a film under my own home production, Rascals came along. I liked the script and felt I should produce it under my home banner. So it is,” says he with the straightforwardness that has become his style.

After his scarred history with drugs and mafia, today Sanjay Dutt is a happy man. Married to Maanyata and a proud father of twins (a boy Shahraan and a girl Iqra), the actor says he has little to regret in life. “I am very happy!! I've a beautiful family and am also starting my own home production with Rascals. I've got back my sisters' love. Besides, I am getting good film offers. What else can one ask for!” he beams.