Emraan Hashmi initially got branded as a serial kisser. And who can blame the controversy theorist with films like Murder, Zeher, Aashiq Banaya Aapne, Aksar and Gangster.
After starring in Awarapan, Jannat, Raaz - The Mystery Continues, Once Upon a Time in Mumbaai, Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji, Shanghai and The Dirty Picture, Emraan Hashmi has proved his acting prowess and put his detractors on mute.
Hashmi entered Bollywood at the age of 23, as an assistant director on Raaz. Then he made his Bollywood debut with Footpath in 2003. In 2004, he shot to fame with his bold avatar in Murder opposite Mallika Sherawat. Now, with Shangahi and The Dirty Picture behind him, he has metamorphosed into an acting powerhouse and a bankable star.
Mahesh Bhatt tweeted in December 2011 to nephew Emraan Hashmi, "Your success is proving intolerable. Please come back to earth beside me where you began. Please give me my gift."
Why this tirade? Emraan Hashmi was once the blue-eyed boy of the Bhatt camp. When quizzed on this Emraan laughed and refused to comment on the tweet but pointed out that even in the past he has worked in outside productions, including Aashique Banaya Aapne (2005), Chocolate (2005), Jawani Diwani (2006), Aksar (2006) Good Boy, Bad Boy (2007), The Train (2007) and Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji (2011).
But truth be told except for Aksar, none of these are as successful as in-house productions (Bhatt camp's) like Murder (2004), Zeher (2005), Gangster (2006), Jannat (2008), Raaz-The Mystery Continues (2009) and Murder 2 (2011).
"The huge success of the Balaji movies has changed that equation," he reasoned with HT Cafe.
By April 2012 things seem to have cooled down. Mahesh Bhatt said in an interview: "Emraan Hashmi was groomed by us and we made him star. He is our boy and we can't distance ourselves from him. He is an asset to us. When I discovered him, people from the industry dismissed him saying he does not look good. But now, everything has changed and now people say that he is one of the most underrated actors."
Bhatt camp or Balaji, Emraan Hashmi continues to spin magic on 70mm screen. And producers are smiling while he fills their coffers.
Born on: March 24, 1979
Sun sign: Aries
Place of birth: Mumbai, Maharashtra
First film: Footpath (2003)
Family: He is the nephew of Mahesh Bhatt and Mukesh Bhatt. Pooja Bhatt, Mohit Suri and Alia Bhatt are his cousins.
Marriage: He married Parveen Shahani in 2006 and has a son named Ayaan with her.
TOP 5 MOVIES
Murder (2004): Played Sunny opposite Mallika Sherawat
Jannat (2008): Played Arjun opposite Sonal Chauhan
Raaz - The Mystery Continue (2009): Played Prithvi Singh opposite Kangna Ranaut
Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai (2010): Played Shoaib Khan opposite Prachi Desai
The Dirty Picture (2011): Played Abraham opposite Vidya Balan
LIST OF AWARDS
2005: Screen Awards for Best Villain for Murder
2011: Screen Awards for Best Villain for Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai
QUOTABLE QUOTES On Rush: "A journalist sent me an SMS that said 'only 20 people are sitting in the hall for your film.' So I replied, 'I feel more victorious in this film (Rush) than even a Rs 100 crore film because I fulfilled a dying man's last wish."
On doing romantic films: "I don't know about my sensibility, I don't know about the way I look and if I fit in with my looks into a love story, whatever. But I think I am pretty twisted in my head to do a traditional romantic film."
On choosing roles: "I think money comes in the second or third category while picking a movie. If you do a role where money is the only criterion, there is something wrong somewhere, sometimes you don't believe in it completely. The first criterion, in my view, has to be the idea behind the movie, the belief that it will do good."
On his son:"Ayaan is two-and-half years old. He has given me a sense of responsibility and is a great fun kid to have around. He dances to all my songs and I can safely say he is a way better dancer than I am."
On media coverage: "There is more important news out there. If you want to show breaking news like a star slapping someone in a restaurant, I think that's something unimaginable. I think there are some more relevant stories, anything else, but not this."
On his onscreen persona: "My characters always do wrong things and then there is redemption. That is why people can relate with them. This has become my persona on screen. I find this fascinating."
On kissing: "I am still kissing in my films and will keep doing that. But I am lucky to have earned the 'hit' tag as I have always opted to work on unique films."
On contemporary actors: "Presently, I fit nowhere in the league of actors who have gained immense popularity through their work. In comparison to them, I have not done enough work."
On serial kisser tag: "It's much better. Please give me that term (Hit Man Hashmi) and everyone use that because I'm sick of serial kisser."
On his wife: "I don't tell her (wife Parveen) about the (intimate) scenes. I do tell her about the films I'm doing. She doesn't hear about it in detail. She is a film buff but she is not struck by glamour. She has her own life."