We’ve heard that you’re making a big come back to Television.
I don’t know whether I should call this a comeback. My show starts in March next year and my film, Housefull releases in April. One is a theme-based celebrity chat show. I am also writing the screenplay for my third film.
You had a chat show on Colors called Sajid’s Superstars, which went off air abruptly.
No, no. It had its runtime. It completed that and then went off air.
Did you watch your sister, Farah Khan’s, chat show Tere Mere Beach Mein and Entertainment Ke Liye Kuch Bhi Karega?
I was shooting overseas for the most of this year for Housefull. So, I just managed to catch the Salman Khan episode, which was fantastic. Yuvraj Singh and John Abraham’s episode was cool too. I think Farah and Anu Mallik have a great rapport on entertainment as well.
Apparently, you’re doing a critics-special qawwali for Star Gold’s Sabse Favourite Kaun Awards.
Look, I don’t have anything personal against the critics. They have their opinions, which I feel sometimes don’t match the general audiences’. The qawwali is about them, but not for them. It’s for the audience. This year, it’s a 10-minute presentation on how the biggest hits are the films panned by critics. I want to make films that the public enjoys. It can’t be for two people to praise me.
You’re inviting the wrath of a different section of the film fraternity. Your show Kehne Mein Kya Harz Hai, shut down a decade ago because of your spicy remarks.
That show on Sony was the mother or safely, the grandmother of all stand-up comedy shows. It was brave and one didn’t have to take the jokes or remarks personally. But I know many couldn’t fathom the content.
Like Ashutosh Gowariker? Who couldn’t take your jokes last year at an award show?
Ashu and I have made up already. We’ve been friends for 15 years and we still are. Most award shows are TV events. So things are blown out of proportion for the TRPs. The fight came across as much mightier than it actually was. Also, one thing that people miss out is that I crack jokes on myself before saying anything about anyone else.
Ali Asgar seems to be inspired by you when it comes to impromptu acts at award shows?
Really? I know that he’s a fine artiste and doesn’t replicate anyone’s work. But it’s not flattering to know I inspire him. I always work without a script and ensure that my audience is entertained.
What’s happening to your romantic comedy, Housefull?
The film is in its post-production stage right now. The rough cut looks really nice. I think it’s an intelligent comedy that has one of the finest screenplays of all time. It’s funny, not a run-of-the-mill comedy and very clever.
It’s said that Housefull is Heartbreak Kid and Chupke Chupke combined.
No way. Everyone thought Heyy Babyy was Three Men And A Baby when Nanhe Farishtey and Kunwara Baap inspired it. I think there is enough for us to get inspired on our shore. We don’t need to look outside for ‘ideas’.
Comedies seem to be falling under the no-brainer category of films these days.
I think every filmmaker who attempts a comedy has his or her own way of presenting humour. Priyadarshan has his brand, Farah has hers, I have mine and David Dhawan has his. Priyan’s De Dhana Dan is doing well right now. Do Knot Disturb didn’t work. Welcome and No Entry faired beautifully on the economics. If No Entry was to be released today it would have become the biggest hit of a decade. It had a very smart script and comedy needs brains.
You had three actresses on Housefull. I’m sure there were catfights.
Oh, no. I had four. Lara Dutta, Deepika Padukone, Jiah Khan and Malaika Arora Khan. I ensured no one fought because it spoils the spirit on the sets. We had our meetings at the production office and decided that we’d hang out, party and eat and work together. No one was allowed to report late. Akshay (Kumar) is a superstar and reported at 7 am, the others automatically turned up.
This is your second movie with Akshay Kumar. Do you treat him like a lucky charm?
I don’t believe in lucky charms. It’s just that when I wrote the script, I knew I wanted Akshay for the part. When Salim-Javed wrote Vijay, they wrote Amitabh Bachchan as Vijay.