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Aamir Khan: I Wasn’t Sure If People Would Like Me Fat and Old in Dangal

Known to pull off experimental looks with remarkable ease, Aamir Khan says he has never been apprehensive about the audience’s reaction.

Sneha Bengani |

Updated:November 6, 2018, 10:05 AM IST
Aamir Khan: I Wasn’t Sure If People Would Like Me Fat and Old in Dangal
Thugs of Hindostan is slated to release on November 8.
Popularly hailed as Mr. Perfectionist, Aamir Khan is known to do one project at a time and spend as much time on each as it takes to get it right.

Since Taare Zameen Par (2007), he has released one film a year and sometimes, taken even two years to complete a project. His upcoming film Thugs of Hindostan is no different.

However, the 53-year-old doesn’t think that he is missing out on anything by doing fewer films than his contemporaries. “My every film roughly takes two years of my life. Those two years is a journey that I am enjoying. So no, it does not occur to me that I should be doing something else. Actually nothing else comes to my vision when I am focused on a project. I have never felt that (FOMO; fear of missing out). Even Dangal took me two years and it was a wonderful journey,” he said.

Arguably Bollywood’s only actor who has been able to consistently maintain both critical acclaim and commercial success, Aamir’s last three films have earned over Rs. 730 crore combined (Dhoom 3: Rs 282.80 crore; Dangal: Rs 387.38 crore; Secret Superstar: Rs 60 crore) in India alone.

But he says he tries to focus more on the process of making a film than its outcome. “You don’t know what the end result is going to be, whether it (the film) is going to be successful or not. But we do have the journey more or less in our control. So if you work on films that excite you, if you work with people you get along well with, who are fun to work with and can challenge you, then the journey becomes wonderful,” he said.

Read|Aamir Khan: I am Hoping that You Forget Jack Sparrow after Watching Thugs of Hindostan

“And then you hope that the film also does well. So for me the journey is very important and of a lot of value,” he added.

Aamir is also known for experimenting with his look in each film. While he turned lean and youthful to play a college student in Rajkumar Hirani’s 3 Idiots (2009), for Dangal, he gained weight to look his part of an ageing father of two grown-up girls.
Despite varied roles and experimental appearances, Aamir has never been apprehensive about the audience’s reaction. “When you latch on to something you feel is right for the character, then you no longer have any doubts. I am still not sure whether people will receive it (Firangi Mallah, his character in Thugs of Hindostan) well,” he said.

“For example when we were filming Dangal, I was never sure whether people would like me fat and old. But I knew it was right for the character. So I had no hesitation in doing that. Similarly, for this (Thugs) also. I was aware that a lot of people would say, “Mard hoke nath pehen raha hai” but I felt it was right and needed,” he added.

The writer tweets @sneha_bengani

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