August 11 was not a regular Sunday for Shah Rukh Khan. As the actor took time out from his busy schedule to visit three city cinemas, he probably did not foresee the frenzy that he’d generate among his fans.
His stardom was evident when he made his first stop at New Excelsior cinema at Fort. The actor, accompanied by Chennai Express director Rohit Shetty, was scheduled to arrive at 4.30 pm; however, crowds had started gathering around the cinema as early as 3 pm. His attempt to make a discreet entry through the rear gate was foiled as the fans waiting outside the theatre managed to spot him and sealed their seats — which ranged from tree branches to the balconies of adjoining buidlings — to get the best possible view of him. As Shah Rukh waved out to the growing number of fans, he also obliged a lucky few by posing for photographs with them.
His next stop was Bandra’s popular multiplex, G7. Even before he could arrive there, the entire lane leading up to the theatre was choc-a-bloc with fans. The crowd went out of control as his car waded through the sea of people. While some excited fans started screaming his name, others scaled the barricades erected near the cinema. The boisterous ones even climbed up on the roofs of cars parked near the venue to get a glimpse of the star, who, surrounded by a human chain of his guards, happily waved out to the public.
But it was at his final destination, Cinemax, Versova, that SRK got a chance to entertain his fans. He even got them to shake a leg to the songs from his film. With hardly any space to even stand inside the theatre, fans even waited inside the glass elevator to see him. Says Shah Rukh, “Wherever I am going, I can see the smiling faces of my fans. There is a tremendous buzz about the film and people really like it. These smiling faces are extremely important to me; more than the numbers that follow at the box office.”