Shooting with a real tiger was undoubtedly challenging for actor Ajay Devgn during the shoot of Himmatwala. However, for Ajay, there was something else a notch higher than this, shaking his leg to iconic hits like Nainon Mein Sapna and Taki Taki.
“Dancing was the biggest Himmatwala moment for me in the film; fighting with a tiger was easier. But Farah Khan (choreographer) and Sajid Khan were sensible. They gave me moments which suited me,” he says.
This is not the first time the 43-year-old has shot with a tiger. “I have done it once earlier in Vijaypath (1994). That time, it was different, as we used to stitch the tiger’s mouth. But now, that’s not allowed. So, we shot in Mauritius because we couldn’t shoot in India. It was a trained tiger, but the problem is that it can attack you anytime. I got little bruises here and there, but it was fine,” he recalls.
The official remake of the 1983 blockbuster of the same name, which releases today, is different from the original starring actors Jeetendra and Sridevi.
“Sajid has revamped and rewritten the film in today’s style, but kept the 80’s era. I don’t think it’s a remake anymore. There was no tiger in the first Himmatwala. In this film, there is practically a tiger in half of the film. Everything changes when the character changes. While Jeetu sahab played an engineer, I’m playing a street fighter. The whole attitude and the styling is completely different. Doing this film has been a fabulous experience for me,” explains Ajay.
Surprisingly, the actor is not aiming for the coveted Rs. 100 crore club. “I don’t want to get into that zone. We make a film for the audiences. The more the people watch and like it, the more are the collections. I hope it does make it there, if that is the barometer. But that doesn’t mean Rs. 100 crore is coming in our pockets. It’s just a term which shows that maximum people have seen it,” he says.
The film, made with a budget of around Rs. 70 crore, has already sold its satellite rights for Rs. 40 crore. Ajay is sure the film will recover its cost very easily. Talking about South actor Tamannaah, the female lead of the film, he says, “She is a pretty girl and she’s very professional. She’s a big star in the South. It’s easier to work with people who have done so many films and have that kind of confidence. So, it was nice working with her,” says Ajay.