When asked to pick his favourite looks, Aalim said, “People tell me they liked Rajinikanth’s look in Robot, or Prabhas in Baahubali, Ranbir’s hairstyle in Rockstar and Sanju, Shahid’s many looks in Udta Punjab and Kabir Singh, Varun Dhawan’s look in Street Dancer. But I don’t know because I am never satisfied with my work.”
Aalim Hakim, whose clientele includes many A-listers of Bollywood, shared the process that goes behind deciding the look for an actor.
“I keep a lot of things in mind while styling for a movie – the character, his monetary status, his age, his phase in the movie, what he is going through. Just like real life, even a movie has chapters, so we style as per chapters. If you see all the films which I’ve styled for – Kabir Singh, Sanju, Baahubali, we do a lot of homework. We sit down with designers and writers. We decide how the texture of the hair should be, whether it should look rich, have extra shine or look brittle. Also, whether it’ll change later in the film if the character undergoes a financial change. Like in Kabir Singh, you’ll see Shahid’s (Kapoor) beard is not manicured. There’s extra hair to make him look like an alcoholic. So all the factors are considered because the hair emotes a lot,” Aalim said.
Sharing how the salt-and-pepper look of Hrithik Roshan’s Kabir was decided for 2019 hit War, Aalim Hakim said, “It’s always difficult because the actor also has his own thought process. In War, it was very difficult for me to convince Hrithik to go for a short hair as both him and the director (Siddharth Anand) wanted long hair. It took me a week to convince them. We did try some extensions with long hair for the film. The director was happy with that but then I was adamant. I believed Kabir had to look sharp in the film. And then Hrithik suggested what if Kabir has a salt-and-pepper hair which will make him look completely different. Kabir is an experienced guy. He is Khalid’s teacher in the film and salt-and-pepper will add some maturity to the character. This I was completely against. However, when I did it, everyone who was present in the room loved it. That’s why I am saying it’s about mutual understanding, listening to each other, and doing what is best for the character.”
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