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Jogging new tracks

Khalid is happy with the role he landed in `Ho Sakta Hai' — Photo: R.V. Moorthy

Khalid is happy with the role he landed in `Ho Sakta Hai' — Photo: R.V. Moorthy  

HE STRIKES a chord instantly with his amiable disposition and polite language, no fake accent and no pretensions, something that these new boys often end up with, especially if they happen to be as popular a model as Khalid Siddiqui.

His demeanour impresses not only those with whom he is friendly for professional reasons but also the likes of Victor Banerjee, known as a tough man who judges a person by his etiquette and calibre. Khalid worked with Banerjee in Joggers' Park. When the director of Ho Sakta Hai Wilson Louis told Banerjee that he had a character in his film who lives in the U.S. but cherishes family values, Victor instantly suggested Khalid's name to him.

Louis found his choice perfect. And that's how Khalid's almost unnoticed 30-second cameo in Joggers' Park landed him with "a full-fledged character" in Ho Sakta Hai, due to release shortly.

"I was supposed to be in Joggers' Park only for that Jagjit Singh ghazal Badi Nazuk Ghadi Hai Ye that Subash Ghai directed. But when he saw me in the song, he gave me small scenes in the film. And look how that 30-second cameo helped Victor make his opinion about me. I am overwhelmed by his gesture," Khalid drops his dreamy eyes in courtesy. Fine, but why is he making his debut with a film on black magic? "It is because of the character called Rahul who is a young doctor living in the US but still very Indian at heart. It is quite an involving role as Rahul believes in modern sciences such as allopathy while his father (Victor Banerjee) is a hard-core traditionalist believing in Ayurveda. The film provided me ample chance to play many shades. Though I am trying to avoid religious interpretations, I know that the holy Quran mentions that prophet was also once affected by `nazar'," reasons Khalid who "refused 15 film offers" before he landed this role.

"I am very fussy about my roles. Kam sirf dil se karta hoon. I say no to scripts that don't impress me despite knowing that it may affect me professionally," says this commerce graduate from Bombay University.

And what next? A film opposite Mahima Chaudhry titled The Film, directed by Junaid. "I am playing an assistant director in the film and Mahima plays an ageing actress trying her hand at writing a script."

RANA SIDDIQUI

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