Copyright issues over the script just before the release of his film, and two other big ticket films trying to elbow him out — Ajay Devgn is in a spot as his comic caper All The Best releases on Friday, but is taking it cool. “All The Best doesn’t have a copyright issue. If people want to get some free publicity just before the release of my film, so be it,” he says with his trademark calm. But he is keeping his fingers crossed for a great Deepavali, just as in 2008 when his comedy Golmaal Returns was declared a huge hit. Only, this time there is much more at stake. Ajay Devgn is in a double role here — as actor and producer. No wonder he has even tampered with the spelling of his surname, dropping the ‘a’ just before the release.
“Oh, that’s long overdue,” he dismisses our query about being struck by numerology. “My family has been asking me to change it for years now.”
Ajay Devgn Ffilms’ (yes there is an extra ‘f’ too!) All The Best is supposedly inspired by American play ‘Right Bed, Wrong Husband’, and tells the story of Prem (Ajay) and his friend Veer (Fardeen Khan), who make losses in certain deals and have to be rescued by Veer’s millionaire step-brother Dharam (Sanjay Dutt). Dharma has been told that Veer is happily married when actually he is living in with his girlfriend. In walks the brother to check in on the situation, and sets the ball rolling for ultimate chaos.
The plot sounds interesting, but the Deepavali weekend also has two other films releasing — Akshay Kumar-Sanjay Dutt’s Blue and Salman-Kareena’s Main Aurr Mrs Khanna. Ask him why people will choose All The Best over the others, and he says: “It’s a laugh riot. The other two films are distinctly different from our genre. I feel people will flock to ours because people of every generation would like to watch a clean comedy. I think we’ll score.”Ajay Devgn, who began his career as an action hero and was best known for his stunts and as the intense brooding romantic, has made a successful career with comedies too. Does he have to put in greater effort to execute them given his image as the tough guy?
“I don’t know what appears to be me in the outside world. At home and on the sets, I am pretty much a fun-loving guy with a good dose of humour. The intense part is as much me as this is,” he laughs.
Ajay Devgn wants to be a complete package, and in the coming months there are enough films to prove that he is. Toonpur Ka Superhero featuring live action and 3D animation with Ajay and wife Kajol will hit theatres in the summer holidays. “I am very excited about this film. It’s the first full-length live and animation film, and it’s been great working on it,” he says. Ajay is also working with Prakash Jha on Rajneeti, with Priyadarshan on his untitled next film, and with Milan Luthria on Once Upon A Time in Mumbai. Once Upon… is the talk of the town as he plays a character modelled on the Mumbai don Haji Mastan.
But, it’s his next film London Dreams that has the industry talking. It marks the coming together of him with Salman Khan. The last time they did a film together was a decade ago — Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam. “I think the story is really good; a drama involving two friends who stick together but end up harming each other. The film has been special because of Salman. I get along very well with him, and that’s what shows on screen. I am sure it will be recreated in London Dreams too,” says the actor.