“Amitji wasn’t looking like himself and so, it was less intimidating” says Ayushmann Khurrana

EXCLUSIVE – Ayushmann Khurrana on working with Mr. Amitabh Bachchan in Gulabo Sitabo.

Tell us about your Gulabo Sitabo experience and working with Mr Bachchan?
He ís a little reserved. But if you’re able to break that wall, then he’s like a friend. I realised that if you’re reserved with him then even he remains so. You need to take that step. He comes on the sets prepared. He knows his lines, my lines everything. If something is going wrong, he will tell you ‘aise karke dekh’. Of course, you get nervous in front of him. I get star struck every time I see Amitji (Bachchan), Shah Rukh (Khan) sir. But I’m glad he wasn’t looking like himself in the film. So, it was less intimidating. He plays the landlord, while I’m the tenant. It is a light, slice-of-life film.

Are you confident about Gulabo Sitabo as well?
Yaar, whatever Shoojit (Sircar) sir offers me, Ií’l do. He ís my mentor. I’ll even do a passing shot in his film. Gulabo Sitabo is a good film. Generally, the tonality of his films is subtle. This is in your face. I loved Shoojit sir’s Piku. It ís spiritual. How can you make a film, based on digestion, which connects with you spiritually? Unbelievable! Piku is his best film. The film becomes even more beautiful when the narrative shifts to Kolkata.

King Of Content – does the title given to you make you feel proud?
Surprisingly, I’m being offered better content now and with established directors. I never got that in the past. Apart from established filmmakers like Sriram Raghavan and Shoojit Sircar, Iíve worked with Sharad Kataria (Dum Laga Ke Haisha), Ashwini Iyer Tiwari (Bareilly Ki Barfi) and Amit Sharma (Badhaai Ho). Our country is plagued by social stigmas and taboos. We just need to pick these subjects. People remark why my films are mostly set in middle-class North India? Middle-class means the janta. That section faces the maximum conflict. Humour too stems from there. Hindi cinema is mostly set in the North because it ís the Hindi belt. The flavour is best captured there.

Gulabo Sitabo is written by Juhi Chaturvedi and also stars Vijay Raaz in a supporting role. Ayushmann’s last release was Shubh Mangal Zyaada Saavdhan, while Amitabh last appeared on screen in Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy.

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