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Cinema has always been commercial for me: Sunny Deol

Cinema has always been commercial for me: Sunny Deol

Sunny Deol gives us an insight into his inability to relate to changes in cinema, why he doesn't let anything pull him down and more.

Mumbai: Marketing a film is as crucial as deciding the cast and giving it finishing touches. Having understood the worth of film's marketing and promotional strategies, actor Sunny Deol has not only conditioned himself to grow comfortable with the idea of discussing his life - personal and professional, but also gives never-ending interviews without a trace of exhaustion.

"Did you have to wait for very long?" inquires Sunny Deol. And when I tell him, it was over an hour-long wait, the actor, without any qualms, gives an instant heartfelt apology. "I'm sorry," he says next. Well, that's just a glimpse of what Bollywood's original action hero is in reality - concerned, courteous and affable.

And as the interview progresses, the reticent Sunny manages to leave me awestruck. But isn't that what he is adept at? Yes.

While many think the drill of promoting films is extensive, Sunny doesn't mind being a part of it. "This time around, I was determined to do everything that was required to promote the film - 'Yamla Pagla Deewana 2'. I thought if I have something to say, I will share it with everybody. Whatever you do, you should love and enjoy. For that's when you do justice to it and make sure the result is positive. So if I'm enjoying promoting the film, only then can I tell people about the things the way they are. That's why just a day before this promotional activity, I was thinking of what I should do. I was actually rehearsing," chuckles Sunny.

The actor, who has several hits to his credit, recalls the phase wherein cinema underwent a change and explains us why he just couldn't relate to it. This was also the time when he had films, but not everybody was interested in making them. Did he ever think that the production houses, which tried to bully him, were doing so out of a great sense of insecurity? "I don't know. And I don't even want to sit and analyse it. I had a severe health problem, with which I live now. 'Aaj haar gaya toh kal mai jeetunga' that's what I believe in and live by. I don't let anything pull me

down," he says.

And the fact that cinema marketing had also begun to operate, Sunny found it tough to adjust to it. "Cinema had changed completely. Soon the agenda of film-making altered from making stories to churning out maximum number of films. It was quite different as everything was seen in accordance with its marketing aspect. And that's what I couldn't relate to," he adds.

Has he managed to connect with the concept now? "Well, I have realized what matters is the substance of the film. One is expected to believe in the films they make. Everybody wants success now and that's why they are busy buying the rights of films, copying them, etc. But that's not me. I'm happy doing what I believe in. I don't go by thoughts like 'Unko wohh achcha lagega', 'Inko wohh achcha lagega', which a lot of people are doing."

When it comes to his son Karan Deol, who will be making a debut with YRF film soon, the father-son duo is invariably on the same page. When we asked him about Karan's school of thought (filmmaking), he said, "To me cinema has always been commercial. It is the same with Karan. When I say, cinema is commercial, I imply entertainment. Ever since I have known cinema, it is all about going to the theaters, shutting ourselves for three hours and enjoying films. But if we find them boring - and those are not intelligent films - they have no meaning," he says.

In addition to action, a genre he is popular for, Sunny is also concentrating on comedy. Doesn't this state the fact that actors are expected to be all-rounders these days? "Yes. Once upon a time, actors weren't expected to be good at everything. This was the time when a hero would only do what he was expected to, and there were comedians who'd stick to their genre. But with the arrival of certain actors, the idea of doing almost everything set in. And everybody wanted to make it one-man show. Having said that, there are times, when we do get good scripts which define who'll play which character, and we love those films because these characters are so believable. Since entertainment is what we look at, we don't mind doing it," he says.

While the brawny actor confirms the fact that he will roll 'Ghayal Returns' by October, he tells us why the project is challenging. "Yes, the sequel to 'Ghayal' is happening and I'm working on it. Agreed, there were a few problems earlier - issues with the director and the way it was written, but all that has been sorted out. Only if I'm satisfied with the film can I put it across to the viewers. And then it is up to the viewers to decide whether they like it or not," Sunny says.

Interestingly, brother Bobby Deol gives an insight into a fact related to 'Ghayal Returns' with which not everyone is familiar. "Bhaiya wanted a sequel when he made 'Ghayal'. He has been futuristic in that manner because he has seen the industry closely. But at that point, the distributors didn't believe in it. As the trends changed, and people were influenced by what happened in the west, they got used to the trend of making sequels. That's why it was easy for us to make 'YPD2'."

Sunny says working out the sequel wasn't easy then because nobody was interested in seeing the character of Ajay Mehra, which he played in 'Ghayal', again. "At times when you create a character, you want to go along with it, but nobody wanted to watch Ajay Mehra then. The film happened two decades back so the story in 'Ghayal Returns' will focus on what happened to Ajay all these years and what makes him come back to Mumbai. We are in the process of auditioning the female lead. 'Ghayal' is an iconic film, and it is a big challenge to come up with the sequel,' he says.