He wears a multi-coloured patchwork long coat, his hair is beaded, head covered with a hat decorated with ribbons, flowers and feathers. He plays the bugle and sings and dances on the streets - that's how Shaad Ali is presenting Amitabh Bachchan in his third directorial venture Jhoom Barabar Jhoom.
Going by the promos, the film has all the trappings of an interesting drama. But what really catches one's attention is Big B's incredible new look, seemingly inspired by Johny Depp's character in the Pirates of the Caribbean series, with shades of Pied Piper added on.
As an actor, Amitabh has been setting high standards by experimenting with new roles. Now he's trying out different looks for his films as well. Trade pundits say the superstar, who has worked up a strange but interesting get up for this character, is the film's USP.
"Whether he plays the main lead or does a cameo, Amitabh's presence in the any movie becomes its USP. The same goes for Jhoom Barabar Jhoom. Filmmakers are vying with each other to cash in on Amitabh's success," Geeta Shree, a Delhi-based film critic told IANS.
<b1>"The promos are generating huge interest and the audiences will surely go to the theatres to watch the film - more so because a huge chunk of them loves watching masala movies. This is a Yash Raj Films' product - they excel in making time-pass masala movies, so this film should surely have great box office prospects. Also, people love watching Amitabh with his son Abhishek together," said Shree.
Interestingly, even Abhishek Bachchan is sporting a new look - his regular stubble has been replaced by a tweaked moustache. Abhishek's female counterpart Lara Dutta comes in a new avtaar as well.
In another first, Abhishek and Bobby Deol are sharing screen space together. Their fathers Amitabh and Dharmendra did a couple of movies together too and their biggest hit was - yes, you know it - Sholay.
Jhoom Barabar Jhoom also has Preity Zinta, who is paired with Bobby. Last time round they were seen together in the successful thriller Soldier released in 1998.
For his second film Bunty Aur Babli, Shaad Ali had roped in Aishwarya Rai for an item number Kajra re and the song turned out to be the chartbuster of the year. It bagged all the popular awards that year.
This time, Ali has brought in Shah Rukh Khan to do an item number with Big B.
Going back to AB's experimentation with looks, he is currently hogging the limelight for his ponytail in Cheeni Kum.
He plays a 60-plus bachelor with a passion for cooking who falls in love with an independent, savvy 30-plus Tabu. Unlike Nishabd, the film appears fresh and interesting and the lead pair strike the right kind of chemistry.
"He looks interesting and intriguing in both Jhoom Barabar Jhoom and Cheeni Kum and people are going to like him," said Shailesh Giri, a film expert.
Compared to last year, 2007 hasn't been as fruitful for Bollywood. So all eyes are set on Amitabh to bring some respite.
"He was the superstar of the 1970s and 1980s and even today he is considered the same. Roles are specially written for him. In fact he is the only actor who holds this position in filmdom at this age," said Shree.