2011 has been a memorable year for the youngest Khan on the block- Imran Khan. First in January this year, he tied the knot with his long-time sweetheart Avantika Malik. In July, he delivered one of the biggest hits of this year- Delhi Belly and now in September, he is riding high on the success of his latest flick Mere Brother Ki Dulhan (MBKD) . In this first part of a two part exclusive interview with Bollywood Hungama‘s Nikhil Ramsubramaniam, Imran talks about this special phase of his career, his experience working with Yash Raj Films on MBKD and much more. Read on…
Imran, firstly heartiest congratulations on the success of MBKD, what kind of feedback have you been getting?
Thank you very much. Honestly the ultimate feedback for any actor is the response from the audience and the Box Office. This film has really done a lot for me in the heartland of India. Places like U.P., Bihar, and Punjab etc have not really been big in terms of collections of my earlier movies but with this film working so well in these areas, I am happy that my market is now expanding. That’s a very good sign (smiles).
Places like U.P., Bihar, and Punjab etc have not really been big in terms of collections of my earlier movies but with this film working so well in these areas, I am happy that my market is now expanding.
Delhi Belly and MBKD, two films as different as chalk and cheese and yet both emerged as success stories at the Box Office? How does it feel?
It’s honestly the best feeling in the world yaar. Delhi Belly was a film which we all wanted to make irrespective of how it would fare at the Box Office because it’s a film we believed in. When it did so well it honestly took us by surprise. I knew it’s a good film but I had never expected Delhi Belly to perform commercially the way it did. MBKD on the other hand is a mass commercial entertainer and for the film to work in such a big way not just in the metros but even in smaller towns is a big high.
This is the first time that you have done an all-out filmy character complete with song and dance and the madness which surrounds it all. For someone who was initially apprehensive about pulling it off, you seem to have done a good job.
Yeah…that is a great source of pride for me that I could pull it off convincingly. Huge credit must go to my director Ali Abbas Zafar who kept guiding me throughout the making of the film. At the end of the day when people come and tell me that they liked how I pulled off the funny scene or liked my dance in the song that is the highest praise that you can get.
When people come and tell me that they liked how I pulled off the funny scene or liked my dance in the song that is the highest praise that you can get.
Katrina and you seem to share great chemistry on-screen be it in the comic scenes or even in the romantic portions. How was it working with her?
Of course I had a great time working with Katrina. In my mind, while shooting, I always thought of MBKD as a funny film but when I watched the film on the big screen, I could see the romantic portions came out pretty well too. I was pleasantly surprised that people have also liked the romantic scenes as much as the comic ones.
And what about the equation with your on-screen ‘Bhaisaab’- Ali Zafar, you guys seem to gel really well…
Ali is hilarious. He is an extremely funny guy both on-screen and off-screen. If you’ve seen the bloopers during the end credits of the film, you will know the kind of fun we had while making this film. He was responsible for making the atmosphere on the sets really funny.
I always thought of MBKD as a funny film but when I watched the film on the big screen, I could see the romantic portions come out pretty well too.
Besides Katrina and Ali, newcomer Tara D’souza too has proved to be quite a surprise package, isn’t it?
Tara is a really nice girl. I just had a few scenes with her and one song but it was a wonderful experience. I remember that while shooting the badminton scene I couldn’t keep a straight face as I found it really funny and to add to it Ali our director wanted us to wear those ridiculously funny costumes and shot the scene in that kitschy 70s style (laughs).
The film has some really funny moments, which one is your favourite scene?
For me it’s the entire post interval sequence when Katrina kidnaps me and I wake up in the middle of the highway. She thinks I am dead and starts crying and that’s when I wake up all dazed. If you notice carefully, she is sitting next to the sign post which says Marghatpurâ€¦I thought the whole sequence was hilarious.
Ali is an extremely funny guy both on-screen and off-screen
While the people have loved the humour in the film, a lot of people felt that the character of Ajju Bhaiyya was a direct dig on SRK‘s character from My Name Is Khan and hence not in good taste. What do you have to say about that?
You know…I never got that. Ajju Bhaiyya was never supposed to be a humorous or spoofy character. It was meant to be a genuinely emotional character. He is autistic but mentally he is very loving and emotional. I don’t know how people ended up drawing such comparisons because while shooting, that thought never really entered our heads.
This is the first time you are working with Yash Raj Films (YRF) and that too in their 50th film how has been the experience?
You know, surprisingly, we didn’t know that it was the 50th film from YRF banner while making the film. We realised it only after the first copy was out. I met Yashji one day and he said, ‘You know beta this is the 50th film for Yash Raj Films’…I was pleasantly surprised and told him, ‘Sir, why didn’t you tell us before, we would have made a bigger deal out of it, maybe had an event to celebrate the occasion.’ He replied, ‘Arre usmein kya badi baat hai, film achchi bani hai na, that’s all that matters.’ That’s what I like about Yashji and Adi. The best part about working with YRF is that all decisions made at YRF are motivated by a creative perspective. All they are interested about is making a good film with a superb story and the right cast.
Watch out for Part 2 of this exclusive interview with Imran Khan, coming soon only on Bollywood Hungama.