Tuesday, March 6, 2007

'Hits and flops are not in my hand'

The Rediff Interview/Abhishek Bachchan

'Hits and flops are not in my hand'

Syed Firdaus Ashraf | May 17, 2004

Abhishek Bachchan began his career as an actor in 2000.

Big films. Big banners. The Bachchan surname. He has it all.

And yet, after 12 releases and four years in the industry, the actor is yet to deliver a hit.

Where did he go wrong?

"Hits and flops are not in my hand," he tells Chief Correspondent Syed Firdaus Ashraf in this concluding part. Yesterday, he talked about Yuva, a film that could be his first hit.

Read on:

You seem to have a huge fan following in the United States. What do you attribute that to?

Is that so? I didn't know about this. If it is true, then it is very sweet of the people there to love me. But, honestly, I have no idea of my fan following.

What other films are you working on?

There is a film called Phir Milenge. Then there is Dhoom and Naach.

I have a lot of releases this year. I am keeping busy. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Though the critics appreciate most of your films, they don't do well at the box office. Why do you think that happens?

Hits and flops are not in my hand. If I knew the reason, you would have not asked me this question.

We do our job to the best to our ability and leave the rest to the audience. Whatever the audience decides, we humbly accept it.

I don't agree that the critics have praised me but the audience has rejected me. I have always maintained that if I were good in my film, even the audience would have liked it. I feel it is just matter of luck, time and destiny.

Is there any particular film whose failure really disappointed you?

An actor is disappointed when any film of his does not work at the box office. It's your film. You work hard on it. If it does not do well, you are bound to get upset.

Do you analyse why your films are not working?

Obviously. You try and analyse what went wrong. You try your best to identify the problem and rectify it. Like I said, you make a film with your point of view, perception and sensibility. But the audience may not agree with it.

The judgement of the film -- as far as its commercial success is concerned -- depends on someone who has nothing to do with the film. The audience has got nothing to do with your perception and your film. They have paid their hard-earned money to see it. They will decide its fate.

It is difficult to judge why my films didn't work. You have to keep trying and trying. Hopefully, you will click one day. But you have to keep trying.

You are extremely close to your father. His films have worked very well at the box office. Do you ask him what went with your films?

He says the same thing. He says that apart from your hard work, it also depends on your luck. There is no particular formula in films that will click. You just have to hope that the audience will like your work. There is no set formula for films to click. If there was one, everybody would have made a hit film.

Your father delivered many flops before becoming a star. When do you feel success will come to you?

I feel success comes to you when it is due [pauses]. It is as simple as that. It is not in my hand as to when success will come to me. I cannot say this film will be a success or a failure.

Is Yuva a different kind of film? The kind that will get you success?

I would like to believe all my films are different from each other. I have not consciously gone out to see whether I should experiment with this film or not. I just got the films I did.

I agreed to do those films because the script or the director inspired me. I have never looked into details. I never felt 'Oh, this is a safe script' or 'That is a risky script'. I never thought about it that way before accepting a film.

But you are still popular...

That is because of the audience. I am dumbfounded and grateful [pauses]. The audiences have stood by me for so long. I hope I can repay them one day. I know it is tough. The only way I can repay my fans and the audience is to continue entertaining them. And that is what I am trying to do.

Did you give yourself a time frame? Like if you didn't make it big in films within a certain period, you would reconsider your options?

I never give myself a time frame. I don't believe in setting a deadline for such matters. I believe in putting my heart and soul in whatever I am doing and making it success. I keep trying till I do it right.

Any film you are looking forward to particularly?

It is very difficult to prioritise a film. I cannot do it. I cannot and I will never be able to do that.

What is the status on Rajkumar Santoshi's Ranveer, in which you co-star with your father Amitabh Bachchan?

It will go on the floors in June. We have just finished the script. Now we are in pre-production.

Aren't you nervous about this project?

We will put in a lot of effort and hope the audience enjoys the film. I understand that people are really looking forward to Ranveer. There will be lots of expectations. I hope we don't disappoint people. We will give more than our best and hope people like our work.

Apart from working with my father, I will be working with Amitabh Bachchan, the greatest star. Anybody will get scared and nervous about that. You are working with the best. I have to keep this in mind while shooting for this film.

Your father was dubbed 'the angry young man'. Do you ever feel the need for such an image?

No. I don't think any actor would like to be categorised or slotted. They would like to believe they are versatile. I would like to believe the same. But the audience categorises us. We have to deal with that. As of now, I am lucky to not be categorised.

What about comedy?

I would love to do comedy. But no such script has come to me so far. I am dying to do a comedy. I think it is hardest thing to do in acting. Hopefully, something will come my way later on.

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