Shah Rukh Khan released the first teaser of his highly anticipated film "Pathaan", giving his fans a surprise on his 57th birthday.
The actor, who plays the titular spy in the upcoming Yash Raj Films (YRF) Production, shared the teaser on his official Twitter account on Wednesday.
"Apni kursi ki peti baandh lijiye (Fasten your seatbelts)…#PathaanTeaser OUT NOW! Celebrate #Pathaan with #YRF50 only at a big screen near you on 25th January, 2023. Releasing in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu. @deepikapadukone | @TheJohnAbraham | #SiddharthAnand | @yrf," Shah Rukh captioned the teaser link on the microblogging site.
The video opens with an interrogation where the informant says Pathaan has been missing for three years after his cover was blown in the last mission.
"Suna hai bohot torture kiya usey (I've heard he was tortured a lot)," the informant says in the voiceover.
This dialogue is an apparent hint to Shah Rukh's self-imposed sabbatical from the movies after the box office failure of 2018's "Zero".
However, this year he had cameos in films such as "Rocketry: The Nambi Effect", "Laal Singh Chaddha", and "Brahmastra Part One: Shiva".
Shah Rukh is introduced as the battered, bloodied spy who proclaims he is alive ("Zinda hai") when a man wonders if Pathaan was dead. It is a nice hat-tip to his industry friend and fellow Bollywood star Salman Khan, whose last film under YRF's "Tiger" franchise was "Tiger Zinda Hai" (2017).
Billed as a "high-octane spy thriller", "Pathaan" is directed by Siddharth Anand of "War" and "Bang Bang" fame. The film also stars Deepika Padukone and John Abraham.
The teaser also sees Deepika involved in stylish stunts and romancing Shah Rukh. John, who previously starred in YRF's biker action hit "Dhoom", locks horns with the superstar on a moving trailer truck.
The film also marks the fourth collaboration between Shah Rukh and Deepika, following her Bollywood debut "Om Shanti Om", "Chennai Express", and "Happy New Year". John and Deepika are working once again with each other after "Desi Boyz" and "Race 2".
"Pathaan" will be released on January 25, 2023 in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.
Salman and Shah Rukh have extended cameos in "Pathaan" and "Tiger 3", respectively. YRF is aiming to combine its characters from these films and build a larger spy universe.