Saif Ali Khan has overcome the initial hiccups in his career to become one of the bankable stars in Bollywood and the actor believes he is finally in a happy space professionally.
Having started his career with 1992 film ‘Parampara’, Saif went on to star in many forgettable films in the ’90s but his career took a new course after the success of Farhan Akhtar directed ‘Dil Chahta Hai’ in 2001.
The 42-year-old actor followed it up with critically acclaimed performances in ‘Ek Hasina Thi’, ‘Hum Tum’, ‘Omkara’ and ‘Being Cyrus’.
Saif, who also runs a production house Illuminati Films and married Bollywood actress Kareena Kapoor in October last year, says he does not feel lost anymore in Bollywood.
According to a report in TOI: “I feel more assured and confident about my ability. I think I can deliver what I am generally being asked to do. I feel I am one of the better actors in Bombay but I am humble about it. I am not arrogant. I am learning and I have a long way to go but I don’t feel lost anymore,” Saif told in an interview.
Saif believes that he has managed to create an image of being a versatile actor over the years.
“I hope I have managed to create an idea of being versatile enough to keep myself occupied and keep it interesting for the audiences,” he adds.
The actor’s romance with Kareena Kapoor kept the gossip columns busy for years but now that they are married Saif says he is relieved to finally concentrate on his work.
Remind him that the focus on his personal life has lessened now that they are married and pat comes the reply, “Thank God.”
“I think that was bound to happen. I feel relieved about that. Now, we all can get on with work. A person should be known for their work and not for their personal life. But people do have a lot of interest in actors and I don’t blame them,” says Saif.
He will next be seen playing a zombie-killer in ‘Go Goa Gone’ which is releasing this Friday.
While the movie has been heavily promoted as a ‘zombie’ film, Saif says it’s not all that “zombie”.
“It’s a very urban movie, it’s a funny one and not aimed at buying anyone into the theory of the zombie. It is essentially a story of these three boys and their ridiculous adventures. So, I think it’s nice if we can just laugh a little bit without thinking what’s a zombie and all of that,” he said.
The idea behind “Go Goa Gone” was also to cater to the audience which wants “new and exciting” genres and storylines.
“The audience is ready and maturing. So it is up to us now to give them the content. I remember Kunal (Kemmu) came up to me with this script, and said this is a comedy about zombies. At first I was apprehensive to try something new, to produce something new, but then when I read the script, I laughed out loud quite a number of times.”
“I believe the audience will laugh too,” Saif said.
The budget for the film, he said, was “not very much”. But he promises they haven’t “cheated” the audience.
Saif is more involved in ‘Go Goa Gone’ as a producer than as an actor. “A creative producer should be involved. I am not talking about people who put films together. I have been an actor so there is an understanding about what an actor is supposed to do when you are a producer. Producer is an all encompassing being. He has to create a platform for the film to happen and that’s what I have done in ‘Go Goa Gone’,” said Saif.
The film faced some trouble with the anti-smoking lobby when its poster came out with Saif smoking a cigar. The actor is relieved that censor board passed the film without any cuts and with an A-certificate.
Saif, however, believes that producers should not face any hurdle in releasing their films once they are cleared by the board.
“It is okay now that censor board has passed the film without any cuts. It is terrible that films get stopped even when the board has cleared them. It is annoying. Board should be the final authority.
“But I feel some people might have a genuine concern because films are a huge platform. You should be careful and not offend people but censor board is a good judge of that. And, good production houses won’t make silly films so filmmakers should not be restricted.”