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Riteish Deshmukh: I give Amitabh Bachchan 100% credit for making me comfortable

October 29, 2009 3:05:58 PM IST
Joginder Tuteja, Bollywood Trade News Network
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Riteish Deshmukh, who plays the role of ALADIN in the namesake film, confesses that if not for the helping hand lend by Amitabh Bachchan, he wouldn't have managed to be relaxed and composed during the making of the film. Even though he has worked with the living legend in films like DARNA ZAROORI HAI and RANN before, he could never afford to convert this comfort zone into over familiarity and had to walk a thin line.

"If ever I was nervous while acting opposite him, it was Mr. Bachchan who made me feel easy. It is quite natural to become so conscious when you are standing in front of him. When he mouths his dialogues, you have to come out of your fan mode and become an actor. However, it's isn't easy. I had to pinch myself hard and get into the character of 'Aladin' rather than be Riteish. I had to remind myself that I was there to act with him, not admire him when the camera was rolling", states Riteish who is first to admit that he is a huge Amitabh Bachchan fan.

Since ALADIN is not the first film he is doing with Amitabh Bachchan, it is expected that a certain comfort element must have slipped in him by now, isn't it?

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"And I give him 100% credit for that", Riteish is quick to reply, "In fact when I was to report for the shooting of the film, I just told myself that 'Ok, now let's just go there and have some fun; there is no point thinking how it would be to be in the same space as Mr. Bachchan'. In any case working with him is such a surreal experience."

It is a known fact that Riteish and Abhishek Bachchan have been good friends. They have acted in films like NAACH and BLUFFMASTER together. Doesn't that make him a part of the family?

"Yes, I am friends with Abhishek but when it comes to Mr. Bachchan, it's the feeling of respect for him as an actor and person", says Riteish in a humble time, "If he makes me feel like a part of his family then that doesn't mean that I can take advantage of this by being a little too over familiar. One has to stay in his limits without crossing the line. Even on sets, we all used to indulge in a lot of fun and humor but the sense of respect is still not diminished."

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Recently, Amitabh Bachchan was also heard stating quite modestly that he is now just a part of the credit rolls and no film today revolves around him. Isn't he just being his usual humble self?

"When Amitabh Bachchan acts in a movie, it becomes an Amitabh Bachchan starrer. I may be playing the title role but ALADIN is Mr. Bachchan's film", declares Riteish, "See, there is so much humility in the man that you can't deny. When a man becomes big, such 'badappan' comes in his talks. He has always come with great dignity and that's the reason why he is respected so much. Actors from our generation and the ones to come should learn from him in a lot of ways."

In ALADIN, Riteish has worked with heavy weights like Amitabh Bachchan and Sanjay Dutt. On the other hand, there is a rank newcomer like Jacqueline Fernandez who is being launched opposite him. Does that make him feel proud that after being in the industry for 7 years now, he is being entrusted with the responsibility of being the leading man for a new face.

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"More than pride, it's the respect factor that counts most", says Riteish, "I am sure every actor in this industry respects a newcomer because at one point of time, they were all newcomers. When it came to me, I knew that Mr. Bachchan and Mr. Dutt would take care of him. I had to reciprocate it by taking care of Jacqueline. It's mutual respect that one has to build. I am sure that tomorrow when Jacqueline is a few films old, she would also take care of actors who are junior to her."

A co-production of Sunil Lulla from Eros International and Sujoy Ghosh's Boundscript, ALADIN has music by Vishal and Shekhar. The film releases all over this Friday.


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