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Wow! MAN

ANUJ KUMAR speaks to Shekhar Suman, unstoppable as ever.

What's next... Shekhar Suman caught in thought. Photo: S. Arneja.

SHEKHAR SHEKHAR everywhere, not a facet unseen. Every time we think we have enough of the enigma called Shekhar Suman we stumble upon a new side of the man. After assuming the title of mass entertainer with Movers and Shakers, Pol Khol, cricket commentary and now He Man on Star One, Shekhar, who compares his career with the Sensex is gearing up to knock at the doors of the industry, which rejected him once. "I took the highway to Bollywood but I think I was not equipped to take on the Bollywood challenge. I got lost in the by-lanes but fortunately discovered a superhighway to success via television. Having done almost everything in the medium, I thought now it is time to take on the challenge again. Also, earlier I used to think that industry doesn't work the way I feel. Now when I have the resources, I felt why not realise my own imagination. I am planning a film about a wannabe actress who could not make it big in the films. It is going to be a one-night two-location film to be shot in 20 days. There would be two characters. I have offered the lead part to Juhi Chawla but she hasn't approved it yet." Shekhar denies that it is his real life, which is taking a female form but he is going to play the dream man the actress is looking for to take her places.

Redefining He Man

The man who loves to talk in idioms and metaphors says his latest show He Man, where an all-female audience select a `he man' out of 10 men every week, is about redefining the term. "Boys think girls like cool guys or boys who ooze with attitude but the show proves that they prefer boys who are themselves. There is no point in behaving like what you are not. That many a `Misters' have been thrown into the pool in the very first round and a number of fat fellows, sardars and men with faulty pronunciation have managed to sweep the girls off their feet proves this. Confidence is the catch word here."

With Pol Khol he introduced humour, bordering sarcasm in the news genre but Shekhar asserts he is not trivialising the news format. "The way politicians have trivialised their responsibility towards the nation, I believe we are doing a serious job of it. There is a combination of reverence and deference according to the situation. We are not creating quotes. We are just highlighting their double standards. Moreover, there is always a scope to try something different. In the 24-hour news channels, news at times becomes verbose and boring."

Shekhar may say that guys with know-all attitude don't click, but the way he is stretching himself he is in danger of falling in the same category, "I always follow a learner's attitude. I feel a complete actor must know about his society, the socio-political conditions facing the country. Unfortunately, most of our actors are not well informed. You could be a good father, a good brother and a good husband at the same time. Can't you?"

This brings to his favourite catch phrase these days: `God created man, you create he man.' So what do you decide?

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