When audiences tuned into their TV sets on June 8, 2014 to watch what Aamir Khan had called his only unreleased film, they realised the film was Chale Chalo: The Lunacy of Filmmaking, the National Award-winning documentary on the making of Lagaan. We met up with the actor to understand his strategy.
“How dare anyone else produce Kiran’s film!”
On TV, Chale Chalo: The Lunacy of Filmmaking, the documentary on the making of Lagaan, was advertised as your only unreleased film! What was the reason behind this strategy?
As a creative person, I try making new things and I am always confident of what I have made. However, people may not want to watch them. For example, if I tell you that I am making a show on female infanticide, probably many will not watch it; but if I don’t reveal the subject and just say I am making a show called ‘Satyamev Jayate’, you may watch it. The invite should be such that people feel they would like to watch it.
Talking about documentaries, people do not watch them in India. May be, it is not in our culture to watch documentaries. I want to encourage documentaries. And this was the first time India saw a documentary on such a large scale. Maybe this will give them a taste for docus and make them understand it is interesting to watch real life. It was my way of introducing people to documentaries.
Are you looking to making more documentaries as a producer?
I don’t make long term plans; I make only short term plans. And there is nothing as of now!
Which other film’s making would you love to watch in a documentary format?
I would like to watch the making of Mughal-e-Azam. I know it took 11 years to make and K Asif saab went through a lot of troubles. It was produced on a huge scale! Today, we have technology like walkie-talkies to help communication but back then it must have been a daunting task to shoot the war scenes!
Shekhar Kapur’s Time Machine is one of your unreleased films. Is there any other?
Time Machine is my only incomplete film. It has been 20 years since it was begun and I don’t think it will ever be made now. I wish I never had an incomplete film!
‘Satyamev Jayate’ was in the spotlight when Maneka Gandhi asked officials to watch its first episode.
Yes, I am very happy about it. I spoke to Manekaji after that and told her that if there is any help required, we are willing to come forward.
There are rumours that you were also approached for Shuddhi. So what’s your next film after PK?
I have been quite engrossed in ‘Satyamev Jayate’ and I have not chosen any script after PK yet. And no, I was never offered Shuddhi!
There are also rumours that Karan Johar might be producing Kiran’s next film.
No way. How dare anyone else produce her film! I will produce her film.
We hear you have been busy playing tennis these days.
Dhoom 3 was quite successful and I ate a lot during the celebrations. And I gained weight! Now I am trying to be fit again so I am playing tennis, working out and also following a diet. In three months, you will see me back in shape!
- Noyon Jyoti Parasara, Bollywood News Service