Filmmaker Atul Agnihotri says working with superstar Salman Khan on their upcoming film Bharat is both overwhelming and stressful as there are high expectations.
Atul worked with Salman in his directorial debut Dil Ne Jise Apna Kahaa (2004) and produced 2011 hit Bodyguard. The two are now looking forward to the release of their much-awaited movie Bharat.
“Having a superstar like him (Salman) you are both relieved and worried. With him comes the responsibility as well. There are huge challenges and expectations from his films.
“He has so much love, adulation and support from everyone. He has such a big fan base. With Bharat we are consciously catering to his fans. He is iconic in many ways. He has larger than life persona and people like that. We have to keep this in mind while working with him,” Atul told PTI.
Atul is married to Salman’s sister Alvira, but the filmmaker said when it comes to making movies things are completely professional between them.
“He is busy and over-committed and so you can’t be impractical about your demands and have to respect his work and time. There is a personal relationship (that we share) but the work discipline is different. Work has to be done in different spirit and emotions are different,” he added.
Atul said the team, including director Ali Abbas Zafar, faced a lot of challenges while making Bharat, an official adaptation of Korean film Ode to My Father.
“We are adapting the film in Indian set-up so we had to get all right elements, right story, emotions, right team, etc. They have set the story on a man and their Korean history. The setting of the story (referring to partition) was similar but we replaced it with events that were related to India.
“In this film we have added flavours like drama, emotion, conflict, song-dance, action, etc through the character Bharat.”
After Salman’s last two films Tubelight and Race 3 did not impressed the actor’s fans, Atul said the team was very particular about how they present Salman in Bharat.
“We looked for a story that we felt allows us to incorporate elements of commercialism and at the same time has a beautiful story, filled with emotions and has other elements as well. We have been very conscious of his audience. Also, the director-actor combination is hit, the story is great so we are hoping people like it,” he added.
The film also starring Disha Patani, Jackie Shroff, Sunil Grover, Sonali Kulkarni and Tabu will release on June 5.