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This Diwali, SRK says Happy New Year

On the set of Fan, the film he’s currently shooting for, Shah Rukh Khan often gets bogged down. It’s a difficult film to make, he says, and the actor often thinks, “ Arre yaar, why am I doing this at this point of time when I could have done an easier movie or taken a break?”

And that’s the time he thinks of Kamal Haasan and the two weeks he spent shooting for Hey Ram.

“He would roll the camera, he’d act… and at lunch, he’d serve us food. Just the effort he put in was inspiring. So, every time I’m down on the sets, I think of Kamal sir. He’s shown the path and I should do the same.”

For now, he isn’t bogged down. He’s in a ‘happy’ (new year) phase. Shah Rukh says he’s never done a film like Happy New Year, his upcoming movie that hits screens this Diwali. That’s because he is also part of it.

“I don’t know if other actors at this stage that I am in would do something like this,” says the actor, who was in the city with the entire starcast at the invitation of Sri Palam Silk Sarees.

“Most of the films I do, whether they’re love stories or serious ones, depend on what I’m doing in it. The character I play leads it. Sometimes, it’s nice to not have that burden on yourself and get others to share it with.”

He’s referring to Deepika Padukone, Abhishek Bachchan, Boman Irani, Sonu Sood and Vivaan Shah. “It’s not an SRK-led film. The hero of the film is all the six of us together.”

Happy New Year strives to combine elements of heist and dance and that, he says, was fun.

“Both of them are things that have to be big,” he explains, “Dance has to be big on screen and heist has to be cool. I hope people across the world like it and remake it.”

He shares a warm rapport with his five ‘partners in crime’ and describes Deepika, with whom he’s teaming up again after their last outing in Chennai Express, as ‘family’. “There was a period of seven-eight years when we weren’t working together. Initially in her career, she used to call me to take decisions. Over the years, she’s really honed herself as an actor. She’s someone ordained to be a star. Farah (director) and me are lucky to have someone like Deepika for this project,” he says. Would he play a completely offbeat role and sport a dishevelled look for a film, we ask him.

“What I would like to do is not important; what people would like me to do for them is,” he says, matter-of-factly. “A film is always a director’s vision. When I have a few days off, I think about all the things I’d like to do. But then, those films are being made — the logistics and timing need to work out. As an actor, I’d never make a film for myself. I’d like to keep it that way.”

The last time he was in town for a promotion, he did the ‘Lungi Dance’ and got Chennai cheering for him.

“I’m told that Chennai Express did very well overseas, and that had a lot to do with the Tamil audiences watching it. That was heartening to know. There were times when people thought we were making a spoof on Chennai, which wasn’t the case. It was a fun film, with no disrespect to anyone.”

SRK’s a huge fan of commercial Tamil cinema. “We get very entertained with the films made here. I’m dying to watch Shankar’s I.”

If Kamal Haasan motivates him to go that extra mile in films, it’s Rajinikanth he looks up to for some real-life inspiration. “What I learn from him is what I follow in real life,” he explains. “I don’t carry my stardom outside the theatre. A lot of people initially told me that because I’m a star, I should dress a certain way. I told them, ‘Look at Rajini sir. In films, he’s a superstar but in real life, he’s a normal person. It makes me feel that when I’m much smaller than him, why can’t I do it too?’” Can he now deliver the difficult ‘Appa Thuppaki’ (his Tamil dialogue in Hey Ram) perfectly? “Oh no, I still cannot get that right. Tabu is still teaching me….”


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Printable version | Nov 29, 2021 2:34:07 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/this-diwali-srk-says-happy-new-year/article6473142.ece

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