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Our films have achievable fantasies: SRK

SRK defends Bollywood's song-dance routine, much ridiculed by the West.

india Updated: Jan 13, 2006 17:57 IST

Fantasies of Indians, as depicted in its films, are achievable as compared to American films that show "amazing fantasies" like King Kong taking over New York, says Bollywood megastar Shah Rukh Khan.

In an interview with Newsweek, which has him in a back page feature, Shah Rukh, while dwelling on Hindi films, said: "Our fantasies are smaller. The fantasies of Indians are still achievable. Our economy, our country and our lifestyle haven't reached a level where we need to go out to space for fantasy.

"And one of the simple fantasies of Indians is that we can sing and dance when we feel like it. Hindi films without songs - is like having American films without special effects.

"Hollywood films don't have songs and dance in them but you have King Kong taking over New York and that, I think, is an amazing fantasy. You have the president of the United States saving the world form a meteorite."

Defending the songs and dances in Hindi films, Shah Rukh Khan said: "There has to be escapism. You can't tell audience about the drudgery of everyday life, you need to tell them about fantastic things."

King Khan defends Bollywood's song-dance sequence, much ridiculed by the West. "Hindi films without songs - is like having American films without special effects," he says. 

The magazine introduced Shah Rukh as a man who has acted in nearly 60 films and produced some of his own. The magazine adds that the actor's career is certainly in ascendance and has headlined the interview with Malcolm Beith, as 'The Great King Khan'.

Agreeing that Bollywood films are increasingly becoming globalised, Shah Rukh, however, said: "In America we have only just begun to make inroads. We have to make our films shorter. I think the brevity of the expression will have to be learned from the West."

He said there was a growing global market for the 900 films being made in India every year. "It's easy to consume 900 films a year in India. And now with the rest of the world opening up, I think 900 films is good."

Questioned about his film Paheli's nomination for the best foreign film in Oscar, he says: "It's about women and emancipation. For a change, a film chosen for the Oscars does not show the darkness and morbidity of the country. It shows a lot of exuberance, colour and happiness."

Shah Rukh said in the interview that, at 40, he didn't think that age was catching up with him, except "when my knees are in pain, or when I run out of breath from going upstairs..."

First Published: Jan 13, 2006 15:35 IST