Joined: 21 June 2005
A chat with the megastar on returning back to the arclights:
How does it feel facing the camera after three months?
It feels the same. Not too different — same people, same mode of work, trolleys and cranes work, music plays — and life moves on. I started on Monday with Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna. It was a day's shoot with Shahrukh, Rani, Preeti and Kirron Kher.
On Tuesday, it was a Bhojpuri film (Ganga) produced by my make-up man Deepak Sawant. He has been with me for 30 years and has, with great courage, put together this project. Ganga was one that was affected the most, due to the illness. It's a small-budget film and would have finished in November. So I gave it priority.
Tell us about your first day of shoot with Karan.
Yashji was in his new state-of-the-art studio. He welcomed me with flowers and a warm hug. Karan came with chocolates and gifts. That's it.
Otherwise, it was like just another normal day back at office… on the first day at the shoot for Karan's film (Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna), people showed respect and joy at my return. I feel odd and embarrassed. Fans too were warm, emotional and affectionate.
They prayed for me and I got back on my feet because of them. I thank them and acknowledge their love. But it's still insufficient and I have no adequate words to express my gratitude to them.
There's been a pile-up of work. How will you cope?
It's not so bad. The producers have been very kind and gracious and haven't thrown me out or replaced me. Timing-wise, there has not been a marked difference in their planning.
No serious delays have occurred and everyone is quite happy, I think. I'll be doing the Bhojpuri film for a couple of days. Then a few days of ads, after which I will shoot for Babul for a while and then KANK again in one final schedule.
Are you taking on any new projects?
No new projects at the moment. There are restrictions on how much I can take on. And I need to finish those that I'm committed to do to before thinking ahead. But I meet filmmakers and like what I hear about them — from Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra and Ram Gopal Varma. There are others too. But I'd rather they took final shape before we talk about them.
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