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It's action time for Bollywood directors

Farhan Akhtar leads the brigade of directors who are venturing into acting.

india Updated: Feb 02, 2006 12:57 IST
Subhash K Jha (Indo-Asian News Service)
Subhash K Jha (Indo-Asian News Service)

"Help!" cries Madhavan. "If all the big-shot directors of the country turn to acting what will we do?"

He has a point. First it was only Subhash Ghai who dug the idea of doing flash appearances in his films. We couldn't blame him. Subhash had come into the industry with the express purpose of being an actor.

But what makes some of our top-notch directors face the camera? Farhan Akhtar, Karan Johar and Shaad Ali have all proved themselves closet-actors.

And pretty competent ones at that. Farhan has completed an entire film called The Fakir directed by Anand Surapur. He is quite kicked by the idea of playing hero.

"I am playing the lead. I am enjoying the experience. My director seems to like my acting. Either he is a good liar or a good friend. They want to premiere the film at the Venice Film Festival," says Farhan.

After The Fakir , Farhan is expected to do a major role in Rituparno Ghosh's film with Amitabh Bachchan and Shabana Azmi.

Farhan Akhtar has completed AnandSurapur’s film The Fakirand is looking for a plum role in RituparnoGhosh's film.

"But I am still waiting for Ritu to confirm. He'd better do so real soon. I am shortly going to be a very busy actor."

Is Karan, too, looking at an alternative career?

"Not quite," he chuckles. "A cameo in Home Delivery doesn't quite amount to an alternative career. Director Sujoy Ghosh was persuasive. I couldn't say no to him. I thoroughly enjoyed my stint as an actor. If you remember, I played one of Shah Rukh's friends along with Arjun Sablok in Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge . Now we know why the film was an all-time hit," says Karan.

"I had started as a child star on TV in Anand Mahendroo's Indradhanush ," he adds.

Arjun Sablok and Shaad are two other filmmakers to have done cameo roles. While Arjun made an appearance in Dilwale Dulhania... and Dhoom, Shaad was seen as a Sufi mendicant in the title song of his own Bunty Aur Babli .

"Sometimes you just don't have a choice," says director Hansal Mehta who has done acting roles on television. "For example, Guru Dutt was forced to step into the male lead in Pyaasa when Dilip Kumar backed out at the eleventh hour. I am not saying any of us is Guru Dutt. But hey, we are getting there."

First Published: Feb 02, 2006 12:57 IST