Shahrukh, the Smoker

srk

The great Indian censor board’s ban on ‘smoking-on-screen’ doesn’t fit documentaries, I assume. Else, this docu interview, The Inner and Outer World of Shahrukh Khan, would have never even made it to a preview theatre. Shahrukh, the man who is perpetually restless, also perpetually smokes in ever damn shot of the interview. And heck, even me who is completely against banning smoking-on-screen, for once thought Shahrukh’s smoking is infectious not only for him but also for others. He smokes during a hair cut, in-between a shot, while lying flat on his bed and even while walking from the backstage, during a public show. While he talks too much about being an orphan after his father and mom’s sudden demise, I’m only thinking Shahrukh should defintely stop smoking atleast for his family.

Anyway, the two DVD disc contains two different faces of shahrukh. One, the inner world of Shahrukh, the man he is in shooting sets, with his family, as a dad and as a loving husband. The outer world of Shahrukh displays the face he is in movies, to his fans and during a public show. Two manifestations of the same human. He pushes a teenager in a public show to dream about naked women. While, he is teaches his son to pray, ‘ Bismillah…..’ on a diwali day. That’s Sharukh for you.

The inner world of Shahrukh was essentially made during 2004 when he was shooting Main Hoon Naa and moving lips for the hindi version of The Incredibles[Hum Hai Laajawaab]. So as Shahrukh talks to the interviewer inbetween the shots, he makes perfect sense. Not an inch of stardom imagination, he has. He is clear that the world wouldn’t stop if he stops to act. He doesn’t carry the hype about himself along and hence he is able to converse from the heart.

The outer world of Shahrukh DVD, follows him through his concerts in the USA. It shows how people love him and how he wanders from one city to another alongwith a huge crew comprising of Rani Mukherjee, the vivacious Preity Zinda and Saif Ali Khan.

Shahrukh Khan was once my fave actor for his versatality but during the last few years, he walks into any movie and just acts smart. As he turns more of an icon than an actor, I think he becoming another Rajinikanth. That apart, he is still seems to be a common man like you, me and everyone else.

The takeaway for me from this 2 hour interesting documentary is this – “I have completely lost track of time. I don’t know where I am, which city I would move tomorrow and where I sleep. All the hotels and rooms look the same to me and tomorrow morning, I would forget which hotel I stayed. I always feel I am late by 2 or 3 days. Even if I were to die, I think I would be two three days late. For me, there is no timetable. There is no past or future. If something has to happen it will happen then. Until then, the world will wait for me”.

What a curse, the stardom is !!

P.S – What a co-incidence, just read somewhere that today is Shahrukh’s birthday. Happy Birthday Dude !!

P.P.S – I am sure Shahrukh doesn’t read this column but with a pinch of co-incidence again, he is planning to quit smoking. Via KV in the comments.

31 thoughts on “Shahrukh, the Smoker

  1. King Khan is the best. Acting a cute college guy(Kuch Kuch Hota Hai) at the age of 35 is not so easy Guru! Well I am mad of SRK so my post on him wud be biased Okeva 🙂

  2. Sorry Lazy, SRK like Rajni is wrong analogy! SRK’s one actor who purely survives by the media hype, and probably he’s the most media friendly Khan. He’s got a good fan base, and in Malaysia he’s a cult, whatever he’s purely a Chopras and Johars man and he sells well only when he plays a lover boy and sings family songs. His charisma evaporates when he tries to do something different. He’s just a limited star.

  3. If there is one Khan who can act, it is Aamir Khan. I like Shahrukh when he acts in movies like swades,hey ram,anjaam etc. Not the karan johar movies kekka bukka siriching shahrukh!

  4. LG, the takeaway part was really thought-provoking. The prize for stardom is superficialness, artificialness, faking etc which are again period-bound! Its like entering into a new life inbetween and getting dropped out of it unless you are an AB carrying on beyond! As you banged on, “curse” is the right word…

  5. Ellam seri … but indha “Co-incidence” part than koncham too mucha erukku !!
    and that too the news today is “SRK has decided to quit smoking as he is entering a new decade ” ..

    nambarom .. eppothaiku .LAZY’yei nambarom !!

  6. “Acting a cute college guy at the age of 35 is not so easy”. Yeah, right. That’s a herculean task. Amon Goeth, Forrest Gump and Michael Corleone (to name a few) are mere “piece of cake” jobs to be done. I can’t belive how many people fall for media hypes like these. SRK is just hyped, too much at that. Swades would have been better if not for SRK. The guy never puts himself in the shoes of the character. In Swades too, he was SRK and not Dr.Mohan Bhargva. Him + Karan Johar/Yash Chopra + Lots of senti + extravagant sets and lavish clothes = super hit movie. Ugh! 🙁

  7. Kartavyani, thats a wow for me. thanks for the pointer.

    Zero Thalaiva, Sathiyama, I didn;t read that news until now. Truly a co-incidence. Sometimes it happens in life. BTW, Are you married ? If not get married to appreciate co-incidences.

    Sneha, I know too many people who are biased about hi. nothing wrong. Go ahead.

  8. Jacky /Ferrari, I don’t think he is such a bad actor. else people like Mani Ratnam and Kamal wouldn’t be using him in their movies.

    Bart, Curse is exactly what i thought when he says that it seems like time-warp for him. i truly pity him for all that filmdom had did to him.

  9. guru,

    i don’t agree with what you took away from the srk tribute. it could be what srk made it seem that influenced you, but stardom is a curse to only those who like to believe themselves as martyrs, sacrificing so much for something they pretend they didn’t ask for. the last comments of his were purely srk being dramatic, nothing more. there are other issues that are can be called a curse, not his claim of being far away from reality.

    having said that, i think srk is a good actor, not a great one. he could probably do more, but has been typecast to perfection that even if he tried, people will not a) allow him or b) accept him. that is truly the curse of being a star and srk is the biggest of them all in many ways. but then again, we do need the srk’s for without stars cinema loses its glamour and timepass appeal.

    katz

  10. LOL @ Krithika 🙂 Good point made.

    Wether it is media hype or whatever, these guys (MGR, Amitabh, Rajini, Shah Rukh) have reached that extreme point. Its a blind fact, and we need to respect these people. They are not actors anymore. They are stars. People dont see story in that movie.. they see the story through their star. So the story is made for the star. ( i have seen SRK differ in that, but fail miserably).

    I second Jacky, SRK is not that good an actor.
    Lazy, Mani and Kamal did not get SRK for his acting skill. They got a Star, and they got him cheap.(infact Mani got him cheap, and Kamal got him free).

  11. Thanks preeti….uh !! my heart just skipped a double beat 🙂

    Keerthi, you are right in your last sentence.

    Katz, Truly, I don’t feel he was dramatic while saying that. Atleast I could infer that from the whole interview. So I think for people like him, Michael Jackson, Beatles, Rajinikanth and ofcourse the recent Google, stardom is a curse.

  12. Keerthi,
    He hasn’t reached a point which MGR, Rajni or AB did, the media is just projecting him like that by not ranting about his flops.
    In 15 years, nobody becomes an icon with 5 blockbuster hits, and a few hits and more than 20 flops. There’s a difference between a top star and an icon – SRK is a top star, certainly not a icon like the guys you mentioned. Even Vijay in 10 years has 4-5 huge blockbuster hits, he’s certainly not an icon yet, just a top star. Salman’s No entry made 30 crores, just as much as Devads did but the press won’t rave about it cuz he’s a badly behaved kid, Rising got the biggest opening ever for an Indian film but then again media will shun it cuz Aamir doesn’t care about the press. SRK is a great PR guru!

  13. Lazy, I got a small doubt. Who is the “Zero Thalaiva” you are referring to? I find nobody who has commented in that name. Whom were you replying to? Any spammer using my name:| ??

  14. guru,

    if anyone really felt stardom was a curse, they would step aside from the glaring spotlight. none of the above people you have highlighted have shown any intention of doing so. there may be hassles that come with that stardom, but that is not a curse. no pain, no gain. even this biography is srk’s way on retaining his stardom.

    jacky,

    srk is an icon whether you like to admit it or not. he is the one who managed to woo global audiences to a level that none of the others have managed to. and since when did success to failure ratio become a benchmark for being an icon?? no entry could have made as much as devdas did, but that movie cannot be compared to devdas. they are poles apart. as for rising getting the big opening, so what? anniyan is a hit, does that make it a great movie?? and even aamir has played the pr game when his movie releases come near. every actor has played the pr game. the only difference is srk plays it better.

    katz

  15. Srihari, It was my mistake to address Srkriz as zero. and thats because both names have a sri in the beginning. that was SRKRIZ from bangalore. Sorry about that.

  16. Iyengarkatz,
    “he is the one who managed to woo global audiences to a level that none of the others have managed to.”
    *It has to be Bachan otherwise Madame tusauds has a wax version of him.
    *I wasn’t comparing Devdas and No entry, for an actor to be an icon he’s gotta be commercial very successful or an acting genius. SRK is not as commercially successful as Big B, leave alone the southies like MGR and Rajni who have a cult!
    *Check his filmography and I reiterate my statement nobody becomes an icon with 5 blockbusters, 4-5 hits, and 20+ flops. That’s just my yardstick!
    *Rising getting the best opening addresses only the part of commercial viability which sometimes is synonymous with SRK. Other stars are capable too, it’s not just SRK.
    Raja Hindustani and Gadar are bigger hits than SRK’s biggest DDLJ but the media seldom talks about it. That’s where SRK excels as a PR guru.

  17. jacky,

    when i said srk managed to woo global audiences, i meant that his movies started the trend of looking at international distribution rights for his movies raked in the moolah. amitabh may have a wax figurine at tussauds, but that doesnt detract away from srk.

    srk’s ddlj out ran sholay! to be a star, you need the support of fans! srk has that in hordes. whether he has a cult behind him or not is not the question. the question is does srk have brand appeal and he does. i am not debating that amitabh or the rest aren’t stars or icons, i am only stating that srk is one too.and if srk was not successful, he wouldn’t be at the forefront of bollywood heroes.

    nobody talked about raja hindustani for there was nothing to talk about it. it had aamir who has always made himself to be the thinking man’s actor or so playing a dumbed down commercial masala hero. it is like saying why didn’t people talk about hero no. 1??? it raked in the moolah too. and why gripe if srk excels at the pr game?? why not blame others for not being as media savvy as him? to be in the spotlight, you need to be media savvy and that is truly another characteristics of being a STAR!

    katz

  18. I was just pointing to a simple fact
    that bigger hits than DDLJ didn’t get such a media hype or in the later years media time.
    I’m certainly not saying SRK is a turkey at the BO but I can’t accept someone an icon just because he plays the media game well. And that’s my yardstick!

  19. jacky,

    he is not an icon because he plays the media game well. he is an icon because he is a star who is universally liked. he is an icon because he literally rose to the top from being a rank outsider in the entertainment industry. he is an icon because he captures truly what is so awesome about indian cinema, glamour and entertainment. and whatever you may say about him, if you look at all the movies he made, it is impossible to think of anyone else playing the loverboy role to perfection as he does.

    when you can have a sania mirza be called an icon, there should be no qualms about calling srk one.

    katz

  20. Katz,
    Aamir was a lot better as lover boy in Andaz Apna Apna and Ishq, Joh jeeta wohi sikandar. SRK sucks big time at comedy, Aamir and Saif look stress free, Salman can pull a few slapstick tricks, tell me a film where SRK excelled at comedy?
    If the media had ranted about his duds like Maya Memsaab, king uncle, Anjaam, Trimurthi, Ram Jaane, Oh darling yeh hai india, Guddu, English babu desi mem, Army, Dilse, Badshah, Phir be dil hai hindustani, Ashoka, Hum tumare hain sanam, Swades, Paheli (I’m talking about movies I can remember easily) He certainly won’t be called King Khan. Why settle for something ordinary when Indian Films had real/bigger icons who have set the standards?
    SRK is sure a saleable star, Icon? Excuse me.
    We differ a lot on standards.

  21. jacky,

    andaz apna apna and ishq required aamir to ham like crazy, for they were comedies not romantic movies. if that is your definition of being a lover boy, good for you. so now you need to excel at comedy to be called an icon?? what next? you need to excel at crying to be called an icon? 🙂

    amongst the duds you have listed are some good movies, different from the rest of movies being churned out. basically you don’t like srk. so let us not waste our time, words and efforts anymore on this issue anymore.

    katz

  22. Katz,
    “what next? you need to excel at crying to be called an icon? :-)”
    Read my earlier pos, I had said that i can accept someone(fimstar) an icon only if he’s a Masala King like Big B, Rajni or an acting genius. It’s you who kept harping with points like Lover boy, so i was forced to get into subtleties of his acting or the Lack of it.
    Now i can return a similar question from your own words, it just takes one to be a lover boy to be an icon?
    That’s ok, don’t worry about replying.
    I’ve substantiated enough on why i can’t accept SRK as an icon and am happy you want to end this argument.
    Thanks.

  23. happy birthday shahrukh i love you so much ur cute, handsome and sexc and another thing plse stop smoking how is aryan and everybody i hope aryan becomes soething like you when he grows up love you bye

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