A large part of the current generation has grown up on a steady diet of three Khans in Bollywood. Starting from the 80s, we have seen their films, read tabloids about two of them fighting and the third one trying to make amends. Their bromance on screen and off screen both has enticed us for years and we’re still not over it.
While Salman started as the boy-next-door Prem and gradually moved into the Bhai zone, Shah Rukh, for the most part, has maintained his lover boy image. Aamir Khan, though, never fell into a box that restricted him. We knew what we were in for when we went for a Salman Khan film in the 90s, the shirtless act was quite a rage back then. We were also ready to fall in love every time we saw Shah Rukh Khan romancing on screen but it was with Aamir that the audience was always in for a surprise.
Be it the uncle in Hum Hain Rahi Pyar Ke or the tapori in Rangeela, Aamir put something new on the table and that usually worked in his favour.
Undoubtedly, there are countless fans of Shah Rukh and Salman but we have often seen on social media that the fan groups of these actors are always waging war on each other. But when it comes to Aamir & his films, the audience unites.
In the past few years, these three have risen to the stardom that is unprecedented. Hindi film industry had never seen three actors rule consistently for three decades. Now, Salman has created a new genre for himself, the films that highlight him as the hero and where he can get away with anything. Shah Rukh, on the other hand, has consciously been trying to break out of his lover boy image but sadly, has not found consistency yet.
Here, Aamir takes away the cake. He can bulk up and be the Sanjay Singhania of Ghajini and can also play a college boy in 3 Idiots.
With every film he does, he brings in his loyal audience and they aren’t there just for him. In fact, they are there to enjoy the film as well which isn’t always true for Salman or Shah Rukh’s audience. The flavour of all his films is so starkly different from one another that the viewer is simply in because he trusts Aamir’s judgment.
Salman and Shah Rukh offer larger than life fantasy that feels other-worldly but Aamir offers stories that engage. He might not be the hero in those but still, his presence makes them better (Taare Zameen Par & Secret Superstar). The former’s fans love them blindly but for Aamir’s fans, they stay consistent because Aamir makes it a point to impress them over and over again.
Aamir Khan has earned the tag of Mr Perfectionist in his three-decade-long career and that too, without stereotyping himself and in an industry where actors are known repeating their hit formulas over and over again, that is a rare feat.