Aamir Khan has always chosen to be an enigma. But through her book, Christina Daniels unveils several unknown facts about the superstar and his films, and we review the positives, and the not-so-positives in the biography.
With Satyamev Jayate creating new frontiers of television viewing in the country, somewhat akin to what had happened with B R Chopra’s MAHABHARATA, it indeed is an opportune time to understand the man, Aamir Khan and how he continues to create new paradigms of success with subsequent initiatives that he is taking in his professional career. The best way to do so is to understand him through a published document and I WILL DO IT MY WAY written by Christina Daniels is the apt title to understand the phenomenon called Aamir Khan. Based on interviews with those who have been associated with Aamir Khan in his cinematic journey so far, though Aamir Khan has not been interviewed, the book provides an interesting insight into the manner in which Aamir Khan has approached his acting oeuvre so far.
Aamir Khan’s interest in the business of cinema was nurtured from his adolescent days when he used to sit in story sessions along with his father, Producer Tahir Hussain, though his father never wanted that his son should become an actor. He may now be proud of the achievements that his son has made in his life and the name and fame that he has earned for himself and the family. Aamir Khan’s business of film making is guided by the maxim that everybody associated with it should make money and from the time that Aamir Khan has officially stepped into the arena of film making he has ensured that indeed everybody has made money.
Aamir Khan from the beginning of his acting career has been dabbling in both the genre the mainstream commercial and the experimental films, so when he made his debut commercially through QAYAMAT SE QAYAMAT TAK, he also acted in Aditya Bhattacharya’s RAAKH, which according to Aditya Bhattacharya is the most truthful acting that Aamir Khan has done so far. As a matter of fact QSQT which became a cult film after its release did not have any takers and after completion was lying in the box for months on end before Naseer Hussain, Aamir Khan’s uncle decided to release it.
After reading about RAAKH one always wonders whether RAAKH would have been a super-duper hit were it to be released in present times. The maxim is being put forward as during those days cinema halls had the capacity of up to 6000 in cities like Hyderabad and till the hall was filled up it would not be considered a hit. It indeed is cruel for RAAKH as these days cinema halls do not have a sitting capacity of more than 250-300, some has now even restricted themselves to 150 odd seats. May be, Aamir Khan needs to take initiative to re-release RAAKH.
Aamir Khan was so confident of his acting abilities that when he got the Filmfare award for best debut, on receiving it he had quipped the award should have been for best debut during last five years. Aamir Khan and Anil Kapoor have had an interesting association with awards according to Daniels. Both were nominated twice over for the best actor awards and both the times it was Anil Kapoor who walked away with it, first time when QSQT and TEZAAB were pitted against each other and second time when BETA was pitted against JO JEETA WAHI SIKANDAR. Besides, though both Aamir Khan and Madhuri Dixit were nominated for best actor and best actress for DIL, it was Madhuri Dixit who got it, while Aamir was ignored over Anil Kapoor and so Aamir Khan stopped attending the award functions altogether.
Being a son of a producer and even before he became producer officially, Aamir donned the hat unofficially in HUM HAIN RAHEE PYAAR KE and JO JEETA WAHI SIKANDER. When he officially became producer with LAGAAN he was the first producer who used internet to market it.
The book has important nuggets of cinematic history, the first one being that Akshay Kumar had also auditioned for the role that was played by Deepak Tijori in JJWS. In the same manner, in DIL HAI KI MAANTA NAHIN, the title song in female voice was choreographed without a choreographer Aamir himself visualizing the whole song. Can it be thinkable in the present times?
Right from the time that Aamir Khan made his debut in JJWS, he is in all probability the only actor who has kissed all his heroines on the screen, most passionate being that in RAJA HINDUSTANI between him and Karishma Kapoor which incidentally is one of the longest kisses shown on screen in Hindi cinema.
Mansoor Khan, his brother and director of two films QSQT and JJWS has said that indeed Aamir Khan is a perfectionist who never loses his track, and it is manifest in Satyamev Jayate where he is diligently following the issues that he covers during the programme.
For Christina Daniels, to be able to come up with a book on Aamir Khan based on interviews with producers and directors who have been associated with Aamir Khan it is an interesting collection. But it would have been more insightful if the views of his co-stars, especially female stars also could have been included in the book. It has an interview with Raani Mukherjee but interview with others would have made it more interesting.
Christina Daniels book could be a pointer for other Indian writers writing on cinema to wake up and start writing on Indian cinema and Indian stars per se, as though we eat, drink and sleep cinema the documentation of it for posterity is not given the importance that it deserves.
Bolly Guru started writing features on cinema with a challenge thrown by a friend to underline that cinematic writing is not a serious stuff. He thinks, cinema being the mirror to and of the society, if one wants to interpret with societal and the managerial tools, and also by factoring in the aspirations and feelings of common man, it can indeed be a serious business. Through this column, he would try to address the same, by bringing in the historical premises, the managerial jargons as also the earthy wisdom of the laity to facilitate a discourse on cinema. Bolly Guru will engage the readers to chip in with their views to make the cinema viewing a serious issue, but with a tinge of humor. The author may be contacted at email@example.com.
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