Two of Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar's big budget films may have bombed this year, but it doesn't worry director Sabbir Khan who has cast him in his ready-to-release mega-budget directorial debut movie Kambakkht Ishq.
"Failures of Akshay's movies don't affect me at all because a movie is a movie...and as a director, you just want to know whether the audiences want to see it or not," Khan told IANS in an interview.
"Everybody goes through ups and downs. An actor's last success doesn't mean anything for a director...That way we wouldn't have had any more movies of Amitabh Bachchan or Shah Rukh Khan or Tom Cruise," he added.
Both of Akshay's much-hyped releases this year -- Chandni Chowk To China and 8X10 Tasveer -- bombed at the box-office.
"I think whosoever's worked with Akshay will want to repeat him. He becomes an instant favourite because of the person he is. He is a genuine human being and a brilliant actor," said Khan who earlier worked as an assistant director in an Akshay starrer, the 2004 comedy Mujhse Shaadi Karogi.
The first time director, who has scripted Kambakkht Ishq, was in the capital to promote the film.
Shot at Universal Studios in Hollywood as well as Italy, Venice and Mumbai, the romantic comedy has much publicised cameos from Hollywood stars like Sylvester Stallone, Brandon Routh and Denise Richards.
Releasing July 3, the film has been produced by Sajid Nadiadwala.
"Both the producer and I dreamt big and we sort of took a simple and interesting story and made it larger than life," said Khan, who is the son of 1960s lyricist Noor Dewasi.
When asked if he was apprehensive about filming Hollywood big shots, Khan said: "I'm a director and I can't let anything overwhelm me. I'm the captain of the ship and it's my job to lead a crew of 300 people every day. So I can't be nervous filming them (Hollywood stars), though I was excited for sure when they agreed to be part of it.
"I had no apprehensions because we were so well-prepared, but it was great shooting Sylvester Stallone and Denise Richards. The Hollywood stars are the USP of the film. They have some very interesting cameos in the film."
Starring Kareena Kapoor in the female lead, it also has Aftab Shivdasani and Amrita Arora in pivotal roles.
The producer is aggressively promoting the film, but Khan has been sidelined from the promotional activities.
Asked about his subdued presence, he said: "It's very natural that my name is subdued. It's only my first film as a director and nobody knows me. Sajid, Akshay and Kareena are very famous people and if the film is known by them, it's absolutely great to have better known people to be associated with the film."
Khan is slated to direct another project with Nadiadwala early next year.