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Aayush Sharma On The Box Office Pressures Of Working With Salman Khan | Antim: The Final Truth

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    4-5 months later, Salman bhai said you know I am going to play the cop. And I said but you
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    are playing a cop in Dabangg and Radhe, its going to be the third film that you will be
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    playing a cop. He was like no but I like the organic reality of this film. I think that this is
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    going to have a different view to it
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    All actors always want that phantom shot. Who doesn’t want the slow motion right?
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    Everybody wants to one day see themselves do that phantom shot
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    A big superstar should always try something new because they are always repeating
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    themselves but when they want to try something new then
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    there is also a box office pressure that binds them
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    But your last film didn’t make 100 crores so that means it wasn’t a hit. But actually, the thing
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    is the film is already made in a budget that it is also recovered its money so we are not risking anything
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    Hi guys this is Himesh and welcome to Pinkvilla. Today we have with us Aayush Sharma
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    who is all gearing up for Antim which is releasing on November 26.
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    Welcome to Pinkvilla Aayush, its lovely having you here.
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    Thank you so much brother. Its amazing to be with you and on Pinkvilla
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    Thank you
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    Aayush my first question to you is you have been involved in Antim right from the time, I
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    think it has been three years. Could you tell us about the journey?
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    I think in November we first time saw Mulshi Pattern and by December we had decided that
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    we are going to make this film. From January onwards I started training for it like you know.
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    At that point in time, I didn’t really know that Salman bhai is going to be a part of it. I just
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    knew that I am playing this character Rahulya and the rest of the casting is going to take time,
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    it’s going to happen soon. So, my first thing when I figured out that I am doing this character
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    was like I want to really present myself in a new light. I really want to go out there and
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    change the way my physical appearance is, through my voice, through my performance to
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    have that kind of a graph that this character demands. At that point in time, I remember I
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    thought this was going to be like 7-8 months and we will be able to do my transformation but
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    it was much difficult to actually put on that weight you know. It was like almost going in a 1
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    kilo per month. So, I think in March I got in touch with Tiger, Tiger Shroff I called him up
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    and I said, brother you know I really want to transform and do this film and this action film
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    and I think you can really guide me in how to go about it. So he told me that you know why
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    don’t you have my trainer? So, I go this trainer on board and the first thing that trainer told
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    me that is sir I don’t think I can do it in 3-4 months. I mean like no, but why can’t we do it in
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    3-4 months? I am not out of shape; I am much leaner. He said no, the kind of action you are
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    looking for, the kind of stuff you are looking for it will give us. It will take minimum one
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    year. It will be a gradual thing. You will need to first start training like an athlete. I want you
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    to be strong in real life to look strong on camera and so it will take time. You will have to lift,
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    eat and you will have to really, really dedicate your life into this to actually do that. So, first
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    thing I went and Salman bhai that its going to take some time, its not going to be as simple
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    and he said, don’t worry. Do it at your pace. Don’t do it in the pressure that you have to start
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    this film this year. We started that journey and then I think about 4-5 months later, Salman
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    bhai said you know I am going to play the cop. And I said but you are playing a cop in
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    Dabangg and Radhe, its going to be the third film that you will be playing a cop. He was like
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    no but I like the organic reality of this film. I think that this is going to have a different view
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    to it. Its not that typical cop who is going to be like you know completely out there. This film
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    has a little bit of darkness to it and I really want to be part of it. I genuinely believe that it’s
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    going to be good for you and I was very happy. Every actor it’s a dream to be on a poster
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    with him. I mean come on who doesn’t want to be on poster on with him? But obviously I
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    knew that it is, I am up for a huge task because to even be worth of being on a frame it is not
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    only a matter of physical transformation, it is not only a matter about trying to look, be or feel
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    muscular. It had to be completely distinct you know my character had to be a worthy
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    opponent to him so I think that took its own course. About a year and a half, we were just
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    training and just working on this character and finally I think when Mahesh sir officially
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    came on board and he started writing the film in the way that
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    he saw the film that really helped in shaping up what happened.
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    And you know the film was initially titled Guns of North and I believe you were planning to
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    set it up in the northern belt. How did that change happen
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    after and how did the Sikh cop came into picture?
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    So basically, when we were working for this film, you know we thought we can you know
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    the situation back drop of where that story starts from is actually, we can set up in north. At
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    the same situation, same things have happened there as well so we thought we might be able
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    to set up north but eventually when we started going through the multiple drafts that we were
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    writing we were not, I was not sure that we have the right approach to the film because it
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    almost felt like we are having a very top angle view to this problem.
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    We had a very top angle view of this gangster and this whole world and how you know
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    people come from this village and become gangsters in the city. I think I felt that it is very top
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    angle view so did Salman bhai. He also felt that you know just to scale up the film it might
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    actually lose the essence of what we really want to tell. A story we want to and then we
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    decided we really got Mahesh sir back and we said we really want it to be a rooted film. A
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    film that has real character, it should feel like a real film. We don’t need a glossy film on this.
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    This story doesn’t really have that kind of a backdrop that you can have choppers and this
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    luxurious cars and this and that. Like my character in the film, he is not, he is the gangster of
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    Pune. But he is not some lavish gangster sitting who has this massive houses and he has
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    Not as flamboyant as we have seen
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    Yeah, yeah. He is a very real space of a gangster so that’s why we moved the film back and
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    we said that lets go to Antim. Let’s make the film we intended to make not go towards
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    And you know you said that you know when the film was conceptualised you were not
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    aware, actually no one was aware that to who is going to play the cop. And for first 4-5
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    months when you were training what were the discussions like because you know in the
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    original film if we look at Mulshi Pattern it’s a very pivotal character but not as long in terms
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    of length. So, what were the discussion like and how did
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    that character evolved since you were involved in the journey right from the first day?
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    See, when we as you rightly said in the original film cops character was actually like 25-30
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    minutes of the film but there is a very, we felt that the climax when he says it was a very
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    important scene if you think about it. When he says, what village are you from? He says
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    Mulshi. That point we felt was a very, very strong point. We felt that is a very strong point
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    then you know otherwise you are thinking there is a cop who us just doing his job, trying to
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    go after a gangster. We felt that this is a very interesting thought to say that there are two
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    people who had the same back story, who actually know they both know each other’s back
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    story very well but on one side there is a cop who has been wronged but he chose to be a cop.
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    And there is one person who chose to be gangster so there’s a flip side to both the characters
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    and both of them had the choice so what Mahesh sir genuinely felt was the story also has the
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    option to give a message out to people that at any given point of time even though you are
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    wrong you still have an option of what path to choose and that’s something that we wanted to
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    project so that’s why we increased the role and we also felt that there has to be a certain
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    person who is the catalyst behind the journey. You know we need somebody who is making
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    sure this journey is manoeuvring the way you know the ups and the downs of the character
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    happen that’s what something we felt and that’s the reason why we increased the element.
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    We increased him very much pertaining to Hindi cinema, we involved him a little bit more,
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    we increased the run time, we gave him a little but of more cinematic treatment to obviously
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    cater to his fans and the film story and make sure that he is still not away from the film. You
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    know it should not be that he is a sperate entity of the film, he is very much also a character
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    in the film like we all are just characters you know that’s how everybody is intertwined with each other.
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    And Aayush you know like you said you transformed for this role. How easy or difficult was
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    that transformation journey like and also because you know
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    in between the pandemic struck us in which delayed the process?
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    Well I think the most difficult thing was the eating. I had to eat a lot. I had to constantly keep
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    feeding myself and that was the most irritating thing. I remember when I was going on a
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    vacation or something I had to go and choose hotels which had certain kind of a gym for me
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    to go to and you know meals booked in advance and eat that. So I think the most difficult part
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    about the transformation was more than anything was just eating, training everyday like there
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    were no of off days so it used to be training every day and then there used to be
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    physiotherapy in the night and there used to be ice bath in the night just to make sure we
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    don’t get injured, to make sure that, there used to be constant process. It was almost like how
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    athletes’ train. And then by the end of it got to me you know
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    And you know talking about the delay due to pandemic, did that ever bother you because you
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    even at the trailer launch Salman sir said that Aayush used to be, when will we start? And
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    you lost patience that one point of time
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    So its but natural because my first film came out in 2018 and I had decided to do this film in
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    beginning of 2019. Now you are like prepping for it, there’s been delays and I have to still
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    work on myself and there is certain amount of days so 2019 is gone in that and then there is
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    2020 that starts and you are okay now, we are three months away. Now we have like one year
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    okay so as an actor sometimes you feel like I debuted in 2018 now if I don’t have a release in
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    2019 then it looks like that there is nothing happening you know those thoughts come to your
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    head. You get like but I had taken up something as Antim which was quite bigger than what I
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    could chew and that needed that kind of effort and that patience to make sure that it happens
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    in the right way so finally when it was about to start in 2020 then the pandemic happened and
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    just you are like that’s work more towards, the three year period by the end of it just felt like I
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    hope by the time this film releases I hope I don’t have to come back and introduce myself to
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    people that you know that I had to, I hope the wait was worth it
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    you know that to wait for something like Antim was worth it
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    And you know talking about Loveyatri and the journey since then what made you decide to
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    you know step away from lighter space, the rom com space and you know switch to
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    something as intense as Antim? And what were the offers that
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    were coming your way in between that?
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    See my first reaction after the feedback I got to me after Loveyatri I always wanted to make
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    sure that I do something else in my next film. Obviously, some offers were coming again that
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    I was a boy next door, falling in love with a girl and the songs and the story and how all these
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    things go by but I genuinely didn’t feel convinced that I want to comeback, to another
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    romantic comedy you know I think that was the first film. I really wanted to shift gears in the
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    second film. I genuinely feel that you know right now its too early in my career to box myself
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    in one zone and say this is who I am and this is what I am going to always do. I believe there
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    is I have time, I have the energy, I am young to keep manoeuvring, keep changing myself to
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    do something else and you know if something excites you, why not? And action has always
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    been one of my favourite genres you know. Let’s be honest all actors always want that
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    phantom shot. Who doesn’t want the slow motion right? Everybody wants to one day see
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    themselves do that phantom shot and I still remember that when finally, the teaser, the first
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    look of Antim came out and I am running Salman bhai asked me what do you think of it?
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    You think it’s works? I said I don’t know I am just happy that it’s a phantom shot. I am just
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    happy that this whole action thing is coming out, I am just happy with that because that’s like
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    a dream come true for every actor to have a phantom shot so I just felt that if I really need to
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    make an impact, I need to throw myself at a different ship altogether you know. In my first
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    film I tried to be this romantic, sweet character and my second film because that’s what the
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    challenge was first thing that many people told me that you are too cute looking for being a
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    gangster. But I said that’s the challenge. This is something that we have here that you look
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    like this so you can’t do this but if you go to see films in Hollywood people, they change
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    according to films. It’s not about how you look. You change, you put on weight, you lose
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    weight. If Christian Bale can put on so much of muscles and then lose it so can I
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    And Aayush you know this is your second film so there might not be much of box office
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    pressure on you but you know with Salman Khan’s involvement there is a certain number
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    that everyone expects, what sort of discussions are there on that front between you and him
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    because you know whenever his films come its like 100 crores in three days and then what
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    next, we will see. So what are the discussions around that?
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    See I think when we started the idea of Antim was actually to attempt something different for
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    me and for him as well you know I think last couple of films that he has done it is the first
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    time that there is no female protagonist for him, there is no song where he is romancing
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    anybody or there is something like that. We are doing something different this time so we
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    were mentally prepared that we are actually signing up for something which is going to be
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    different either and this is a honest conversation. Either it is loved because it’s a dark film if
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    it’s not loved it might not get loved, its fine. But even he wanted to attempt it, even I wanted
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    to attempt it and I feel that at this point in time I genuinely don’t have as you rightly said I
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    don’t have the box office pressure but his name is expecting something. People are expecting
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    those things but I think it is all about experimenting. Sometimes I genuinely feel that we
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    always speaking on his behalf that a big superstar should always try something new because
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    they are always repeating themselves but when they want to try something new then there is
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    also a box office pressure that binds them
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    But your last film didn’t make 100 crores so that means it wasn’t a hit. But actually, the thing
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    is the film is already made in a budget that it is also recovered its money so we are not risking
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    anything out here but that image of 100 crore but that also boxes you into that small thing that
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    100 crores if you want to keep playing in that club you might have to repeat yourself all the time.
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    So there are no pressures in that front?
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    No, I think we are very content with the fact that we are trying to tell something. This is a
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    different film for both of us that’s why you know we feel that I just feel that this film has, this
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    film will see its own destiny and I think there will be people when we went into the whole
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    sequences there were times when we would say that you know Salman bhai’s film audiences
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    are more family audiences, is it okay to have this in the film? Are we okay to be so brutal in
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    the film and the idea was that I think its high time we need to, we can't always be catering to
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    same cinema. He is always been a huge superstar and he just told me I have time between
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    before Tiger starts and I genuinely want to do this film
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    as an experiment for myself as well so I think that’s exciting.
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    And Aayush what next for you after Antim?
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    Well there are you know I genuinely feel that I really don’t want to rush into anything you
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    know I just feel that you know everything depends mainly for Antim because this is a big
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    film for people to actually gauge what I am capable of. So I would not say that there is
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    multiple offer that I am getting or I am this film and that film and I am sitting and work, this
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    is not that. I genuinely feel that there is going to be a, its going to be a career defining film for
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    me. It’s a very important film for me if it does connect, if it does get the appreciation and the
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    love then it will be based on Antim. Right now, everybody will talk about movies but they
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    will not start the time Antim shows its merit at the box office. So I really don’t want to rush
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    into it you know based on anything, I just want to take my time. After my first film I took my
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    time to work on the things that I was told that this is the things that I ned to work on as an
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    actor. I worked on it and I came to Antim. So I am sure there will be some feedback that I
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    will get after Antim, I will work on that and then I will what I want to do next
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    But there are reports about you doing another film with Salman that’s Kabhi Eid Kabhi Diwali? Is there
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    any truth to that or there have been multiple reports for the last two years that’s why?
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    Well, you know this film is definitely on floors, its called Bhaijaan and I think they are
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    already Sajid bhai and Salman Bhai discussing for it. I think it all depends if you know Sajid
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    bhai and Salman bhai want me in the film and if they offer me and tell me to do the film I
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    will definitely be a part of it and why not? It is Farhad sir is
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    directing it, Sajid bhai is there, Salman bhai is there, I think it’s kickass
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    Perfect. Thank you so much Aayush. Lovely talking to you and wish you all the best for Antim
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    Thank you, thank you.
Title:
Aayush Sharma On The Box Office Pressures Of Working With Salman Khan | Antim: The Final Truth
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