Salman Khan’s been having a busy week. At 10 pm on Tuesday, hours before he wraps up his day, the actor speaks to us at Mehboob Studio, Bandra. Here are some excerpts from the interview.
What can audiences expect from Dabangg 2?
I don’t know. Dabangg (2010) did really well. I don’t know if you can expect the same thing from Dabangg 2 or not. We’ll find out on December 21. We will also find out what the audience thinks of it.
Was making the sequel tough?
It is very difficult. If you follow the same path, aise lagta hai ki yeh dekhi hui picture hain (it looks like a film you’ve seen before), if you do something different, then it looks like a different film. There has to be a mix.
How was it to be directed by your brother, Arbaaz Khan?
I was glad. He was very involved in the first film.
Then is it true that he ghost directed Dabangg?
No. It was directed by Abhinav (Kashyap). Arbaaz was the producer, so he was involved. But Abhinav refused to direct the second part, even though we insisted that he should. I don’t know why he refused. After that, I thought Arbaaz was the best choice.
You gave Sonakshi Sinha a break with Dabangg. Now she has become a successful actor. Was working with her different?
She is a confident girl. She has lived cinema, which is why as soon as she wore the sari in Dabangg, she looked like Rajjo. This role got her where she is today and she is comfortable knowing that. Sonakshi, Sohail, Arbaaz and I share a great comfort level. That has helped our on-screen relationship.
You were popular as a romantic hero with films like Hum Aapke Hain Kaun (1994) and Maine Pyar Kiya (1989). Do
you miss those roles?
No. A hero is a hero — whether in a romantic role or in an action part. I would like to go back to doing those kinds of films too, but they have to be larger than life. Everything you do has to be larger than life.
You’ve always said you don’t believe in numbers, but your films have always raked them in.
I have always maintained that no one should lose money. You should earn a little more than what you have spent on the making of the film for the sake of the exhibitors, distributors and the audience. This Rs 100 crore, Rs 200 crore hype I don’t get. Today these numbers exist, tomorrow they may not. As long as no one is losing money and people are enjoying the films that are being made, it’s all good.
Do you watch a lot of TV? You’re being appreciated as the host of Bigg Boss.
I watch a lot of TV. That’s why I can contribute this much. Today, I missed watching the 10 pm episode of Bigg Boss, but I’ll catch the repeat telecast later. Sometimes when I don't understand what’s happening, I watch some episodes twice.
What’s the next step for your charity, Being Human?
Lots of stuff is happening. The Being Human café will start in 2013.