Ajay Devgn takes on a tiger for Himmatwala
Shalvi Mangaokar, Hindustan Times
Mumbai, March 18, 2013
First Published: 17:49 IST(18/3/2013)
Last Updated: 17:15 IST(20/3/2013)
Back in the day, Amitabh Bachchan took on a real tiger in a stunt sequence in Mr. Natwarlal (1979). Of course, those were the days before CGI. In a surprising move, now, Ajay Devgn has repeated the stunt for his next, Himmatwala.
Sajid Khan has recreated the long gone era of Jitendra and Sridevi, stars of the original Himmatwala. From the sets to the the songs and choreography, everything is a revisit to the golden era.
Director Sajid Khan says, “For the tiger-fighting
scene, we flew to Mauritius. There’s a tiger farm there, where all the tigers that are used in films are trained by professionals, and the stunts are performed under their guidance.”
Sajid reveals that he had suggested a body double for Ajay, but the actor insisted on performing the stunt himself. “Ajay was quite kicked about it. We shot with the tiger for seven days, out of which three days went in shooting Ajay’s hand-to-hand combat sequences. There was a huge cage with Ajay, the tiger and four trainers inside, which was later digitally erased.” We wonder if Ajay suffered any injuries during the shoot. “He got a few scratches here and there, but the major scratch was on his neck, which bled a bit,” Sajid says.
About the experience, Ajay says, “It was quite difficult to shoot the sequence, but we had taken all the necessary safety precautions and permissions. We are sure that the audience will love it.” The film releases on March 29.