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Shahid to fly fighter plane

Next Friday Shahid Kapoor will become the first actor in the world to fly F 16 In Super Viper. For over a month, the actor has been undergoing preparation for his big flight, which will take off at the...

bollywood Updated: Feb 14, 2011 13:57 IST
Hiren Kotwani

Next Friday Shahid Kapoor will become the first actor in the world to fly F 16 In Super Viper. For over a month, the actor has been undergoing preparation for his big flight, which will take off at the Indian Air Force Station at Yelahanka, near Bengaluru at the five-day Aero India Show, which takes place once in two years. The show starts on February 9.

Previously, Ratan Tata has flown the fighter plane at the Aero India Air Show in 2007. And Tom Cruise flew an F 14 for his action thriller Top Gun. However, Kapoor, who plays an air force officer in father Pankaj Kapoor’s directorial debut Mausam is not flying this advanced fighter plane for the movie.

Instead, this exercise is initiated by the producers to let the actor have a first-hand experience of the adrenaline rush experienced while flying to help him to play the air force officer for the film better. The schedule starts in Gwalior on February 15.

Sheetal Talwar, Managing Director of Vistaar Religare Film Fund, which is producing the film in association with Eros International, confirms, “We wanted Shahid to experience flying a fighter plane. We saw Aero India as an opportunity to get him in to the cockpit of the F16 In Super Viper. It’s not available in India otherwise.”

Next, the producer expressed his request to the authorities at Lockheet Martin Aeronautics. “We’re glad they approved, because it is one of the most advanced fighter jets in the world,” he enthuses. When they got the approval from the international aeronautics company, Kapoor was put through a series of standard tests prescribed by them before he could begin his training. The actor will undergo more stimulus training over the next few days before his flight on February 11.

When asked, Shahid Kapoor says, “It’s a huge honour and privlege. At the same time, it’s probably the coolest thing I’ve done in my life. So I’m all the more excited about flying high.”