Salman Khan may have been missing in action in 2013, what with brother Sohail Khan’s film Jai Ho being pushed inordinately due to some delays in the shooting schedule caused by the fighters’ association strike. But with the film ready for release next week, things are likely to change. It helped that his angelic and devilish avatar in Bigg Boss kept his fans and television viewers happy.
But with Jai Ho being the first big ticket release of 2014, coupled with the long hiatus, expectations are predictably high.
In true Salman style, the promotions for the film were kick-started from his favourite abode-Mehboob Studio with a flurry of activities around him. Yet again, Khan after a couple of hours of TV shows emerges, yawning after a television interview. There is a short time-out when he speaks with newbie Daisy Shah, the heroine of his film and director Sohail Khan before resuming the Q&A session with trademark nonchalance. Turned out in a pair of denims and checked shirt, he seems visibly relaxed, a far cry from earlier times when he was under duress due to his health issues.
Quiz him if playing a social activist, as has been widely reported, is a first of sorts and he says, “Everyone is so bogged down by the situation around and then you see the hero go through it and come out of it. It is that kind of a film, which come with an energy booster; those are the sort of movies that I want to do. This is not a film about a revolt or an andolan, it’s about each man standing up for himself. It’s a personal vendetta. When a corrupt minister gets involved with you, it is difficult to withstand the pressure. The hero has to protect his family and he feels that this must stop. Luckily in the film, there is a good politician too and the good comes around.”
Of the prospects of his film, he characteristically gets philosophical, admitting that if the film is good, it will find enough and more takers as people have started going back to theatres as a family outing.
But the talk-of-the-town this season seems to be his new find Shah, who was one of the dancers in one of his past films. It was with no small sense of surprise that the industry had woken up to news of an unknown young girl without a supermodel background (although she has dabbled in a wee bit of modelling) or filmi lineage land the part in a film opposite Khan. Though of course, it is not the first instance when he’s played Pygmalion. Katrina Kaif and Sonakshi Sinha are some of the notable actresses, who received Khan’s acting patronage and have gone continued…