Known for essaying a wide variety of roles, Anupam Kher will soon be seen as a tech expert in an intelligence agency in Taapsee Pannu's Naam Shabana, touted as India’s first spin-off based on Taapsee’s character in Baby, the 2015 hit, starring Akshay Kumar in the lead.
“My character in Naam Shabana offers help to Taapsee when she needs me in the project and that’s about it . It is Shabana’s story and her film,” Kher told HT.
With a huge body of work in over 500 films, Kher said he loves doing all kinds of movies. “In a span of 35 years, I have done 500 films. When I met Woody Allen, he asked me, ‘I’ve heard you have done a lot of films. What is the number?’ I had done 417 films then. He asked me, ‘In how many lives?’” Kher said.
But with so many films behind him, what could the veteran actor ask for. “When you do so many films, you cannot always have good films. No matter how much I want, I can’t always get a Saaransh or Maine Gandhi Ko Nahi Mara,” he said. “A film is not just about the actor. The director, writer, cinematographer and a lot of other factors come together to make a film and when all that happens perfectly, you get a great film.”
Talking about his comic roles, Kher said, “Hum (Amitabh Bachchan-Rajinikanth starrer) was a fun film and I enjoyed doing the role. The Himachali touch and bald heads (Anupam and Annu Kapoor) was a last minute touch.”
“When I went on sets and read the script, I did not quite find it very interesting. I asked Mukul (Anand, director of the film) to cancel the shoot for the day. Annu and I then got our heads shaved, and decided to bring the Maharazji touch to the characters. I really enjoyed doing it,” he said.
On the life lessons he learnt from his films, Kher said, “Not all films can teach us about life. But Mahesh Bhatt’s Daddy is one of my favourites. The emotional journey that I went through for the character of Anand was tremendous. I learnt that no matter what, there is always a reason to get up and fight back.”
With his kitty boasting of two National Awards and more than a dozen cult classic films, is there a way he keeps himself grounded? “I always tell the truth to myself and never lie. I have never carried the burden of Anupam Kher the actor. I see Nigahein and tell myself that is bad acting,” he said.
Directed by Shivam Nair, Naam Shabana will release on March 31.
Watch Naam Shabana trailer here:
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