BEING A BIG ENTERTAINER usually entails living up to great expectations and Shah Rukh Khan knows it all too well. He shows no intent of slowing down and his fans seem to want more of him with every new movie of his. Ask the man about his choice of movies and he smiles with confidence – having managed to make the right choice every time he has found himself at a crossroad.
Speaking to City Times in an exclusive interview while in Dubai to headline the Access All Areas – SRK Live in Concert, the star shared his love for making movies which usually tend to be mass-entertainers.
“I have never thought of box office figures but then I speak from a position where I have the biggest hit in the history of Indian cinema. I just want to do a film which makes a lot of people happy to watch.”
His last movie Chennai Express has gone on to become the highest grossing Bollywood film worldwide. The mantra for success in films is simple – “If you have a lot of people happy to watch (the film), there will be a lot of money coming in.”
His choice of romantic comedies has guaranteed him success as a star but at the same time it has invited criticism as well – which he takes in his stride.
“A lot of people turn up and say, ‘you do the same roles’. I mean – if I do 70 films in the same role, people wouldn’t watch my films. They would just move on. There is obviously a nuance to acting which is not to be experienced or explained to the audience. I enjoy doing it which means it is something new and fresh for me. If I put my last seven or eight pictures on the table, they are interestingly different films. The ones I am doing next make me even happier.”
‘I FLY TO DUBAI TO RELAX’
Shah Rukh Khan is no stranger to Dubai and he enjoys the time in the city to relax and unwind.
“I actually fly to Dubai or London when I want to relax. I don’t get disturbed at all when I’m in Dubai. I don’t like going out since my whole day is surrounded by so many people. I like being in the quiet space of my home whenever possible.”
Shah Rukh’s villa on the Palm Island is used by his family when travelling together to the city or during vacations. “If I come for work to Dubai then I don’t stay in my house because it is too big. During New Year we spend about 8-10 days at our house here, but the kids come more often with their mother,” he said.
His trips to Dubai have become more frequent with Farah Khan’s Happy New Year being shot majorly in Dubai. Two shooting schedules have already been completed and four more are expected to be shot in different parts of the city during the next few months.
“Whenever people see me in public, they assume I am always in public. But if I am not shooting, I would be in my room. My son is in London and he studies there. So whenever I get a day off, I just fly down and spend a day with him. There are only two places I am at – either at work or at home.”
Asked about the latest addition to his family, baby boy AbRam, Shah Rukh said, “The baby is good. I got a little thwarted by the fact that people wrote so much about it when he was being born and that’s why I don’t talk about him much now. He is healthy and very sweet.”
HARD WORK PAYS
|I tweet myself: SRKShah Rukh Khan does not endorse brands on Twitter and he likes to keep things simple. “I don’t allow anyone to tweet using my account. I do it myself. As a matter of fact, if someone tells me what to write on my Twitter account, I don’t like it. Sometimes the ads I do, they ask me if I can mention that I am shooting for their product and I say I won’t. I write whenever I feel like,” said the star.|
Shah Rukh draws inspiration from the people around him and he never misses an opportunity to appreciate the work of his female co-stars.
“The kind of cinema I have done, most of the times women have played a very important role in it. The women I work with have helped me and perhaps made me see a more sensitive side of myself as an actor and also realise that there is no alternative to hard work. Women work harder than men in the film industry because it is male-dominated.”
Talking about his preparation for live performances, Shah Rukh confessed to having special rituals before the big climax at any concert.
“I go backstage and for 15 to 20 seconds no one disturbs me. I recite Nasrum Minallahi Wa Fathun Qareeb (Help from Allah and success is near).”
In between film shoots, concerts and work commitments, Shah Rukh prides himself on being a family man and still being able to read bed-time stories to his kids whenever he is home.
“I think there is a difference between being lonely and being alone. The kind of hectic lives we lead in our mind and hearts, you need to have the time where you sit down and become one with yourself, nature and God. I think of moments and places where it is strangely meditative. I just sit quiet and surround myself with the goodness of life that has been given to me and I am very spiritual. I am a big believer of Allah and am very God-fearing.”
For SRK fans, there are always more reasons to love the man with every passing day.
Muaz Shabandri ([email protected]) / 2 December 2013