On the eve of the release of Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, Shah Rukh Khan is in conversation with Rajan Singh
Thats for you to decide after you see the film. For myself and the way the film has been written, I am more inclined towards Surinder Sahni who is lovingly called as Suri in the film. As far as Raj is concerned, I cant really say that he is the antithesis of Suri but he more like the opposite spectrum. They both are two different characters Surinder is rooted in reality and I think thats the difficulty and the dichotomy in the film. Normally a film has a world of its own and within that world you can play with two different characters like say for example the characters from Om Shanti Om or even Duplicate. Both the guys in a certain sense belong to that film world. The two characters actually belong to two different worlds so it might seem a little odd. Raj whose full name is Raj Kapoor is over the top character and has given a hammed performance while Suri is a very realistic character and seems like from a different world and to get a balance between the two characters was very interesting for me as a performer. I think the viewer at the end of it all will like it.
Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi
So Shah Rukh is it a conscious effort from your side to get away from that Raj or Rahul image which you have become synonymous with?
Nobody does films to break any myths or iconic things or to turn around tables, you only tell stories. May be age has happened to Aditya Chopra (Adi) and myself. I would like to believe rightly or wrongly that we were responsible for creating Raj post DDLJ (Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge) who was this cool yuppie guy and wore Harley Davidson jacket and sported cool glasses. What I tell everyone is that we had thought off to show viewers this beautiful exterior of this very cool guy who is very attractive at first sight but we thought that years have passed and what people liked about Raj was not the jacket or the cool attitude but it was more the inside of Raj. He could tell you that he will marry you only when your parents say yes to it. That was the inherent goodness of Raj. This time we decided to take the trappings off and decided that we will take all the coolness off from the body of the car and this time we are only going to present the engine which is simpler looking and is very ordinary and also which may be at first sight perhaps may not be appealing and thats what drives the car this time. People will now see that inside Raj was Suri. This time I am sure that people will like the soul more than the body.
Judging by the image that has been splashed everywhere, can I take the liberty to say that SRK will resemble Suri 20 years later?
I dont think so. I think I will be cooler, nicer and more hep. Its just a character and I have met someone who is like this. Actually I keep meeting lot many people who dress like Surinder. The idea is to play a common ordinary man. Fortunately or unfortunately, as the years have passed, people dont think of me as an ordinary person because of the kind of garb everyone puts on me. So to try and undo that, I had to go a little simpler than I would have liked to but its nice and I like him. Actually when I was watching the film and after the film got over, it does break away from what I have stood for years. I started talking and walking like Suri. I am from Delhi so in a certain sense I also know the language (Punjabi) that Suri speaks. I was also aware of the Lahja, the dialect and the accent that he uses, so I actually started writing certain lines while I was shooting the film. Adi even told me that I have become like Suri. Its actually a lot like Suri. I am actually very shy in real life. I am reclusive, very quiet and may be even boring which people dont get to see that side of mine. Suri is not me after 20 years. Its more of me right now.
Because of the terror attack, not many takers are there for films right now. Do you feel that it might just hamper the business of the film?
If you are talking about the business aspect of the film, one does not know. It all depends upon the mood of the people. I spoke to Adi and Yash-ji and asked them that if its ok to release the film right now? They said yes and this is what we have decided. Somewhere when you make a film you become a little spiritual about the film. You believe that some other forces help you make the film; if that force is helping you make the film then the same force will help you to release it also. We are going ahead and releasing the film and is called Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi. I believe Rab will help us all and I also believe that in these times when everyone is not feeling good and are bit gloomy and a not in the best frame of mind may by a bit of diversion like this might help ease things. Life has to go on and sad as it may sound life has to go on. So as life is moving on we are doing our bit as entertainers, we are only saying that listen guys, peace marches are there and everything is happening and we all are trying our best by talking to the world, I am talking to everyone that I can make sense to in my own capacity as a person who is 43 years old and is an Indian but besides that I am also an actor. I normally give these offerings to people a couple of times in a year. I believe in the facts that have a good time and get diverted for a while. Forget your worries in your life for a while. Hopefully on December 12 when the film releases some people get time and are able to say that lets get diverted for a while because this film is a comedy and its hugely entertaining. It does not have any baggage of stress attached to it. And after people have seen the film, they are able to say that it was good to be diverted for a while from all this mayhem and sadness. Hopefully the people will like it and we are of the belief that God will look after it.
Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi
The backdrop of the film, as it has been heard, is that of dancing; did you enjoy all those dance numbers in the film?
The film has as much dancing as I do in every film of mine. You have five songs in every film and on few of those songs you are given a chance to dance. Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi is a regular Hindi commercial film, which has a huge Indian taste. Seeing the film is like eating home food. Its like eating a paratha and its very wholesome. We have tried to base the film a little in reality. The film is the story of an ordinary man with a wholesome entertainment background. There is dancing in the film so I have tried to dance. I am not good as other actors who dance really well but I have given a shot and hopefully I have danced ok in the film.
Something about Anushka who debuts with you in this film?
This film needed a new actor like Chak De! India or OSO needed, so there are certain films that require new actors. May be, this film even required a new male lead but Adi being so used to me, opted for me again. But coming back to Anushka, she has done a fantastic job in the film and the way she has performed does not show her from any angle that its her first film. Its a very controlled performance from her side and she has done a terrific job in the film.
Thanks a lot.