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AR Rahman says he starved himself a day before his Oscar win to look thin

AR Rahman may have performed onstage at the 2009 Oscars ceremony but he spent the entire day leading up to the ceremony by starving himself so he could look thin.

music Updated: Feb 05, 2019 17:36 IST

Press Trust of India
Indian Bollywood actor Anil Kapoor (L) poses with music director AR Rahman during an event to celebrate ten years since winning the Oscar award for Best Original Score in 2009 for the film Slumdog Millionaire.
Indian Bollywood actor Anil Kapoor (L) poses with music director AR Rahman during an event to celebrate ten years since winning the Oscar award for Best Original Score in 2009 for the film Slumdog Millionaire.(AFP)
         

AR Rahman created history in 2009 by becoming the first ever Indian to win two Academy Awards in a single night but the music composer says on the eve of the ceremony, he was “starving” to look in shape.

Rahman bagged two Academy Awards, one for the original score for Slumdog Millionaire and the other for the hugely popular global hit Jai Ho. While things changed dramatically for Rahman post his win, when asked what was his mental space on the eve of the big award event, Rahman told PTI, “Actually nothing. I was just starving to look thin for the ceremony!”

 

The Danny Boyle-directed drama swept the 81st Academy Award with 8 trophies out of 10 nominations. Rahman shot to global fame with his win and went on to get two more Oscar nominations in 2011 for his original score and song for Boyle’s 127 Hours.

AR Rahman, Gulzar and Anil kapoor along with Dharavi slum children celebrating the 10th anniversary Slumdog Millionaire's big win 2009 Academy Awards at Kamaraj Memorial English high school at Dharavi in Mumbai, India, on Monday.
AR Rahman, Gulzar and Anil kapoor along with Dharavi slum children celebrating the 10th anniversary Slumdog Millionaire's big win 2009 Academy Awards at Kamaraj Memorial English high school at Dharavi in Mumbai, India, on Monday. ( Satyabrata Tripathy/HT Photo )

When asked if it is difficult to move past the shadows of two Oscars, Rahman said, “Yes. I have moved on because it’s a great identity for me and I needed that identity to be in Hollywood. Now, whenever I am mentioned there, people know my name.

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“That helped me move further not just in music, but also producing movies and going into technologies like virtual reality and cinematic virtual reality and so much of the stuff that’s going to come this year. So, all this freedom came with this power.”

The composers was speaking at a special ceremony to celebrate the film’s ten years of Oscar win, Monday. The event took place in Dharavi, Asia’s largest slum, as an ode to Slumdog Millionaire, which chronicled the story of a boy’s journey from rags to riches.

AR Rahman, Gulzar and Anil Kapoor celebrating the 10th anniversary Slumdog Millionaire's big win at 2009 Academy Awards at Kamaraj Memorial English high school at Dharavi in Mumbai.
AR Rahman, Gulzar and Anil Kapoor celebrating the 10th anniversary Slumdog Millionaire's big win at 2009 Academy Awards at Kamaraj Memorial English high school at Dharavi in Mumbai. ( Satyabrata Tripathy/HT Photo )

On the occasion, Rahman narrated an incident how Anil Kapoor missed watching him bag the Golden Globe award as the actor went out to get a drink for him. “I was sitting next to Anil and I was so thirsty. He was very kind and said he’ll get a Sprite for me. By the time he went and got it, I got the award,” Rahman said.

To which Anil replied, “I’ll never forgive him! I was waiting for him to get an award. But he was thirsty so I said I’ll go. There was so much crowd at the bar counter, by the time I was back he got the award! “But then I saw the Oscar, which was the cherry on the cake. You don’t know what I felt when he went on stage and the song was played. I wish I could break the protocol and start dancing on stage. I had to control myself,” he added.

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First Published: Feb 05, 2019 15:03 IST