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'Date problems just an excuse by actors'

Bollywood producer Sajid Nadiadwala says he has never faced date problems with stars but is aware that actors often use it as an excuse for not doing projects.

india Updated: Dec 13, 2008 17:01 IST

Bollywood producer Sajid Nadiadwala, who has hits like Mujhse Shaadi Karogi and Heyy Babyy to his credit, says he has never faced date problems with stars but is aware that actors often use it as an excuse for not doing projects.

"I have never faced date problems with any of my actors. If somebody wants to work, there will never be date problems. If actors don't want to work in your project, then they will give a date after five years and will ask for a fee that is unbelievable," Nadiadwala told IANS in an interview.

He has worked with actors like Salman Khan and Akshay Kumar and some of his earlier hits include Jeet and Judwaa.

Nadiadwala says no actor has refused his offer till date. "We (the family) have been in the business for the last 55 years and have grown up in this industry. We understand how it works.

"No actor has turned down my offer so far and I also do my preparations before approaching them. First, I approach only if I think he will be comfortable with the role and then I make sure that the script is complete and I am satisfied with it."

"Many of these stars have worked with various senior directors or producers at the initial stages of their career. They cite all these excuses as they respect them and normally don't want to say no to them."

Nadidawala says stars are more concerned about comfort than money.

"Stars are also human beings and they also want to work with people with whom they are comfortable. Money is not an issue as they know they will always be paid. Whatever money is made out of a project, the producer will keep 10 percent of it and give the rest to the actors," Nadiadwala explained.

He also says the actors are not so ruthless that they want producers to lose money. "It's a hand-in-glove situation where both think for each other."

Though his films are known for lavish backdrops and high star value, Nadiadwala said: "I have never signed any star. The actors whom I had signed went on to become stars. So I never had the intent of signing stars for my films. It was never a conscious effort from my side.

"When I signed Rani (Mukerji) and Preity (Zinta) in Har Dil Jo Pyar Karega they were not stars, but they became stars later. The same was also the case with Priyanka Chopra when I cast her in Mujhse Shaadi Karogi."

Nadiadwala is known to be an Akshay loyalist.

"I know Akshay from my school days as he was my batch mate. We used to get along well from the beginning; so there is no question on why I sign him."

His first film with Akshay was Waqt Hamara Hai in 1993 and then he went on to cast him in Mujhse Shaadi Karogi, Jaan-E-Mann and Heyy Babyy. And he has teamed up with Akshay once again for Kambakht Ishq, which also has a special appearance by Hollywood star Sylvester Stallone.

He admits that the biggest high of his life was meeting Stallone.

"He was sitting in his room and I was speechless when I shook hands with him. It was a situation when people cannot talk, they start to murmur. After all, I was meeting my favourite hero, watching whom I have grown up," said Nadiadwala.

His favourite Bollywood actor is Dharmendra. In 1992 the producer made a film called Zulm Ki Hukumat with the yesteryear star.

"I have grown up on him, so I decided that I would make my first film as an individual producer with Dharamji."

First Published: Dec 12, 2008 14:36 IST