Oscar-winning director's humility was disarming: Anupam Kher
By Subhash K. Jha, IANS
Anupam Kher, who is away in Shanghai shooting for Ang Lee's "Lust, Caution", says he was overwhelmed by the modesty of the Oscar-winning director.
"The first thing he said to me was, 'It's an honour to meet you, Mr. Kher. Thank you for agreeing to work in my film.' I nearly choked on his modesty," Anupam told IANS.
Anupam is the only Indian in the film set during World War II.
"So I play a normal guy dressed in a suit. It has none of the exotic mumbojumbo that Asian actors are associated with in big Hollywood films."
The actor is having the time of his life in Shanghai.
"Though it's freezing at minus-zero temperature, I don't feel the cold. The people out here in China are as hospitable as we are back home. Not for a moment do I feel like an outsider.
"And Ang Lee has put up a massive Hollywood-style set, the kind we used to see in the films of Cecil de Mille, etc. The technicians, including the cameraman, are the same as 'Brokeback Mountain'."
The talented actor admits that he is very upset with the contestants on "Zee Cine Stars".
"What do they think of themselves? Last week I was very annoyed by their laidback attitude. These youngsters know nothing about struggle. They're brought to Mumbai by Zee, put up in five-star comfort. They'd never know what it is to be strugglers," said Anupam.
"I know because I've gone through the grind. When I came to Mumbai from Shimla, I got pushed around from one producer's office to another. Even today my fellow judge Madhur Bhandarkar tells me has 30 aspirants waiting outside his office every day.
"And then to hear these youngsters, with their cushy prospects, complaining about their paining backs and squabbling amongst themselves for stupid reasons, was too much."
Anupam, who is judging the talent show along with Bhandarkar and Pooja Bhatt, didn't participate in one episode of "Zee Cine Stars".
"But as soon as I'm back from my shooting, I'll be back on the show," he added.