Television person Sajid Khan has followed in the footsteps of his choreographer-turned-director sister Farah Khan with his film Heyy Babyy. The promo of the film has already registered record hits on youtube.com. Sajid tells us what movie-goers should look forward to in his debut film.
You are doing so well on screen, then why take up direction?
(Laughs) Yes, everybody is asking me this. Actually, since I was just four I had wanted to make a movie. Every time I saw a film I kept thinking how I would have made it. So you can say, direction was my dream.
Why a comedy film for a debut?
I am known for comedy, it is my identity. So had I made a movie of any other genre, I would not have left my mark in it. Next time, I will make an action film.
How does the title of the film relate to its story?
Men, irrespective of their nationality, think about other women even after they are married. I have heard married men saying "Hey baby, how are you doing baby?" and such stuff over the phone to their girlfriends. I have a friend who had the same disease. But the day he became father to a baby girl, he was cured. Leave alone talking, he does not even think of other women. So I was quite amused with the impact that the small girl had in my friend's life. It touched my soul and I thought of depicting this in a hilarious way through my film.
You have 14 actresses in one item song, was that required in the movie?
I had to depict the flirtatious nature of men. And at the same time, we had to put up a larger-than-life image before the audience. For this song, Sajid Nadiadwala had an estimate budget of Rs 2 crores. I could have hired other girls but when I asked known people in the industry, they agreed readily. So taking them was a better option.
Wasn't it difficult to manage 14 actresses?
No, not at all. Generally it is really difficult to manage so many actresses at the same time on the sets. The reason I managed it is because they are all very good friends of mine. The most difficult part was to handle the four-month-old in the film. I have never seen Akshay waiting for any of his shots. But then we had to wait for seven days to capture one smile of the baby. We used to get irritated at times but nothing could have been done, because she is too small to understand. Nevertheless, she is so cute. Her real name is Johaina, but in the film she is Angela.
How different do you think is the comedy in your film compared to other comedies?
Not very different. But I have tried that all my three actors do a different kind of comedy. Even Boman Irani has done a Munna Bhai-style comedy. It's going to be a treat, especially for children and women.
It's being said that Heyy Babyy is the copy of Hollywood movie Three Men and One Baby?
I have scrutinized a lot of films and had labelled them as copies. So I am not so stupid that I will copy and give others a chance to point a finger at me. However, I personally believe that one needs to be very talented to copy. And I won't deny that I wasn't tempted to copy at times.
How was the casting done for the main lead?
I am lucky that every one I had thought of while writing the story, co-operated with me. I know Akshay kumar and Fardeen Khan since the time they entered the industry, I know Ritesh from his first movie and Vidya had invited me as chief guest for a function in Xavier's College.
You have criticized quite a few people in the past. Is it payback time now?
There is a possibility that people who dislike me will talk negatively about the film. But I am confident that Heyy Babyy will impress the box office.
You had said that just by watching a film you can tell whether it will do well or not?
Yes, it's true. But I can bet that people will like Heyy Babyy. Interestingly, Bunty Aur Bubbly did a golden jubilee though critics had dismissed it as a flop as soon as it released. I have worked on the story of Heyy Babyy 17 times. I strongly believe that this film will do well.