I’m very fond of Sikh lifestyle: ‘Singh Is Kinng’ directorAugust 10th, 2008 - 8:53 am ICT by IANS
By Subhash K. Jha
Mumbai, Aug 10 (IANS) Akshay Kumar’s “Singh Is Kinng” is running to full houses in cinema halls and its director Anees Bazmi says he hit upon the idea of making a full-on entertainer with a Sikh as the hero because he loves the “community’s lifestyle and daring”. Bazmi said he was always sure that he would do justice to the community and personally got Sikh groups to watch his film before its release.
“A lot of my friends are Sardarjis. I’m very fond of them for their lifestyle and daring. I’ve never done a film that would hurt any community’s feelings. Quite frequently I get rid of potentially funny scenes when I feel they’re offensive. I want to distribute love, not hatred, through my cinema,” Bazmi told IANS.
He even went an extra mile to re-shoot scenes that Sikhs objected to. And for this, he had to fly Akshay Kumar back all the way from South Africa.
“I personally approached major Sikh communities to watch ‘Singh Is Kinng’. They pointed out scenes that were not quite right. We recalled Akshay Kumar from South Africa and re-shot those scenes. Then the Sikhs were quite happy.
“Our intentions cannot be doubted. People who saw the film on Wednesday say ‘Singh Is Kinng’ is better than my ‘No Entry’ and ‘Welcome’. My wife thinks this is my best work to date and my children love it. That’s a relief. If people in my home don’t like a film how can I expect people outside to like it?” Bazmi said.
The film boasts of a number of hit combos - Akshay-Katrina Kaif, Akshay-Vipul Shah and Akshay-Bazmi. So does the director feel it could be a victim of over-expectations?
Said Bazmi: “I’ll say only one thing. I’ve made a very good film. It’s a much bigger film than my ‘No Entry’ and ‘Welcome’. But I wasn’t thinking of those films while making ‘Singh Is Kinng’. I didn’t want to repeat the earlier formula. For the first time I’ve incorporated action scenes in my cinema. I don’t like action, but because of Akshay we had to include it.”
The director admitted that he was really nervous before the film’s release and that he promptly headed to the Ajmer Sharif shrine in Rajasthan.
“I go before the release of all my films and spend four-five days in Ajmer Sharif. I’m able to overcome my nervousness there.
“I don’t make four films a year. I make one film every two years. So I’ve no immediate project to fall back on. I’ve put my entire life in ‘Singh Is Kinng’,” Bazmi said.
The director also faced questions about whether producer Vipul Shah, who has directed films like “Namastey London”, ghost-directed “Singh Is Kinng”. And he was quick to rubbish these rumours.
“Vipul never interfered. He’s a smart producer. He knows I have 32 years of experience behind me in the industry, while Vipul has only directed three films. People are aware of my experience, and my last two films were massive hits. So when a producer invites me to make a film, why would he interfere? I hate producers who intrude in my work. And anyone who signs me knows it.
“Vipul loves and respects me. That’s why he approached me. I’d love to do another film with him. If Vipul didn’t have confidence in me why would he let me direct? He’d have done it himself.”
And the director credits Vipul Shah for enabling him to make the film in record time.
“I normally shoot one film at a time. It’s because of my producer Vipul’s planning that I could complete and release ‘Singh Is Kinng’ eight months after my last release, ‘Welcome’.”
Bazmi also revealed that he has already shot for 20 days for his next project “It’s My Life”, which stars budding actors Harman Baweja and Genelia D’Souza.