Two actors who became household names for their six and eight-pack abs had no option but to lose them for their next films. While Aamir Khan had to shed muscle and turn skinny to play an engineering student in 3 Idiots, Salman Khan had to bulk up for
. Salman had to forsake his now-famous muscle definition to look like a natural Pindhari warrior in the period epic that releases this Friday.
Khan worked out religiously, morning and evening, not only before
on the sets but also while filming it. According to director Anil Sharma, in the late 1800s and early 1900s, most men of the Pindhari clan were heavy-built. Since they were mostly mounted on horses, weilding swords, they needed bulked up bodies.
“Salman has a chiseled physique, so he didn’t have to start from a starch. He just had to alter his fitness regime,” points out Sharma.
Having written the film himself, Salman was commitment to getting the look right.
Ride here, ride now
It is believed that while shooting at Mumbai’s Film City, Khan would cycle from Bandstand to Goregaon. “He needed to work specifically on his shoulders, back and legs. So he would cycle to work,” says Sharma. “Wherever we shot, we ensured that the hotels we stayed in had a well-equipped gym so Salman’s workouts weren’t disturbed.”
Although the warriors in the 1800s and 1900s didn’t have toned bodies, they were well built and tough. “The swords weighed 10-12 kilos and the armour another 15 kilos. If you’ve seen the Hollywood film 300, you will have noticed that warriors had a lifestyle that helped build and maintain this kind of physique,” explains Sharma.
He informs that during the outdoor locations in Rajasthan and U K, Khan would wake up early and work out for at least an hour before he starting shooting.
“Salman was disciplined not only about his exercise routine but also his diet. Back then, people used to have physiques that conveyed power. He ate well but ate right,” smiles Sharma.
The director recalls Sunny Deol’s look in
. “Sunny exuded raw power. So does Salman in
Even after pack-up, he would get together with 10-15 others and workout diligently. The effort shows on screen,” applaudes Sharma.
The once roly-poly filmmaker admits that under his
hero’s influence, he too would do light exercises once in a while. But usually at the end of the day, he was too exhausted and only wanted to crash out.